$4.00 rheCreatrOeVtaman GAIA-THE LIVING PLANET Spring/Summer 1990 Volume 10, No. 3 Spring/Summer 1990 The , Creatine V}oman Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 3193 Published under the auspices of the provosts office, © 1990 governors state university and helen hughes ISSN 0736 - 4733 STAFF I lelen E. Hughes, Editor Suzanne Oliver, Art Director Barbara Conant, Library Resources Cynthia Ogorek, Managing Editor Priscilla Rockwell, Editorial Consultant Lynne I Iostetter, Word Processing Linda Kuester, Word Processing Emily Wasiolek, Editorial consultant Lynn Ann Lindvig, Editorial Consultant EDITORIAL BOARD Glenda Baily-Mershon, Illinois NOW/National Organization for Women, Oak Park, IL Donna Bandstra, Healthgroup International, Sherman Oaks, CA Margaret Brady, Social Sciences, Homewood, IL Rev. Ellen Dohner Livingston, Religion, Unitarian Society of Ponoma Valley, CA Rita Durrant, League of American Per/women, Doylestown, PA Deborah Garrelson, Counseling, Muncie, IN Temmie Gilbert, Theatre/Media, Governors State University Linda Grace-Kobas, Journalism, University of Buffalo, N.Y. Harriet Gross, Sociology/Women's Studies, Governors State University Helene N. Guttman, Biological Sciences, Bethesda, M.D. Bethe Hagens, Anthropology, Governors State University Barbara Jenkins, Psychology, Governors State University Betye Saar, Fine Arts, Hollywood, CA Terri Schwartz, Psychology, Governors State University Sara Shumer, Political Theory, Haverford College, PA Lynn Thomas Strauss, Women's Studies/Parenting, Oak Park, IL PAGE TABLE OF CONTENTS 3 Introduction: James Lovelock's GAIA: Reweaving the Web of Life by Helen Hughes SECTION I - FIVE CONFERENCES ON THE ENVIRONMENT 8 Earth Day, Chicago, April 22, 1990 , Women, Gaia and Ecology by Riane Eisler 11 Conference: International Women's Writing Guild- Washington, D.C. 11 Ringing the Gong by Cynthia Ogorek 14 In My Own Words by Hannelore Hahn 17 Conference: Soviet - American Citizen Summit on the Environment 17 In Moscow: Women - Peace - Ecology by Rosemary Matson 19 Listen the Future Anew! by JoAnn Cannon 21 VideoConference: Corporate America and the Environment 21 Live from Governors State University - Corporate America and the Environment by Sally Pettrilli 23 Conference: Womanquest 23 Lady of Turning by Kendyl Gibbons 23 Declaration of the Four Sacred Things by Starhawk 24 Secrets, Dialogues, Revelations: The Art of Betye and Alison Saar, reviewed by Helen Hughes 26 SECTION II - THE HUMAN-ANIMAL BOND AND THE QUESTION OF ANIMAL RIGHTS 26 The Wonder of Whales by Marilyn Fischbach 29 Factory Farming: Not Mr. MacDonald's Farm by Marcy Gross 32 SECTION III - THE MOVEABLE FEAST 32 GaiaSpeak by Bethe Hagens 35 Poetry by Margaret S. B. White 38 A Report from the Conservation Chair by Catherine Blair 39 Green Holds No Response by Sarah Probst 40 Two Book Reviews of The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution by Carolyn Merchant 40 Reviewed by Lynn Lindvig 43 Reviewed by Margaret S. Matchett 44 Letters To the Editor 46 Editor's Column The Creative Woman is published three times a year by Governors State University. We focus on a special topic in each issue, presented from a feminist perspective. We celebrate the creative achievements of women in many fields and appeal to inquiring minds. We publish fiction, poetry, book reviews, articles, photography and original graphics. Cover Artwork "Embrace" by Deborah Koff-Chapin © 1990 See inside back cover for details. INTROD UCTION JAMES LOVELOCK'S GAIA: REWEAVING THE WEB OF LIFE Part 1: Lovelock's Hypothesis Do you remember where you were and what you were doing on the day our astronauts went bouncing about on the moon, and we saw for the first time that incredibly beautiful and moving photograph of our Home — our precious, fragile, shimmering blue-green-white planet Earth — hanging like a jewel in the total blackness of space? I was in my study in Hyde Park and I thought we human beings had turned a corner, that a rise in consciousness equal to that of the Copernican revolution was inevitable. So I started dating everything from ONE - Day One of the New Age, day two.. .that lasted about a month. I couldn't find anyone else who shared my vision of the turning point in human history as marked from that image of Earth as seen from space, so I gave it up and rejoined the majority. But, what if I was right? that it was a watershed moment in human consciousness? As the Iro- quois ask about any important act or decision: "What does this mean to the 7th generation?" What will our great-great-great grandchildren say about us and our wisdom in the late years of the twentieth century? Twenty years have passed since that luminous moment, leading to a joining of the feminist and ecology movements: ecofeminism, the richest of the rivers of feminist thought, combining the spiritual, visionary, holistic worldview and the latest knowledge base and insights of science. This issue explores the hypothesis of James Lovelock, (a British scientist who first published his Gaia theory in 1969, the book in 1977, paper- back edition 1982, and his latest, The Ages of Gaia, in 1988), and some of the implications of his theory. Jim Lovelock is a specialist in gas chromotogra- phy, the inventor of the electron capture detector and an expert in environmental analysis, a scien- tist in the tradition of Rachel Carson, gifted with the ability to see connections that others had missed. In the early 1960s he was invited by NASA to help devise ways and means to detect life on Mars and other planets as NASA was making its first plans for space probes. Their design involved looking for life in ways that would provide evidence that life existed on Mars, similar to life as we know it on Earth: taking soil samples, searching for chemicals that would suggest life processes at work, and so forth. But Lovelock asked, "Why should we assume that Martian life will reveal itself by tests based on Earth conditions?" and then he asked, "What is life? How can it be recognized?" However, because science has been divided and subdivided into small and smaller disciplines, no one was looking at this question and Lovelock found a dearth of material. People were studying small pieces of life, but few were trying to say what life was. So he set to work. And in the process of designing an inquiry into life on Mars, he discovered new relationships on earth that led him to his GAIA hypothesis. Here is his working definition: "Life is an open or continuous system, found wherever there is an abundant flow of energy, with a tendency to shape or form itself as it consumes nutrients and excretes waste, a self- regulating system operating in a feedback loop." He concludes that the biota — the sum of all living things, including plants, animals, and micro-organisms — not only profoundly affect the earth's environment, but act to maintain and enhance life on the planet. His friend William Golding suggested that he name this idea GAIA, after the Greek Earth Goddess, Mother of the Gods. Lovelock found that the chemistry of the atmos- phere violates the rules of steady state chemistry, that a disequilibrium exists that suggested that the atmosphere is not merely a biological product, as oxygen often is, but more probably a biologi- cal construction — "like a cat's fur, or a bird's feathers, an extension of a living system, de- signed to maintain a chosen environment." So GAIA is a complex entity involving the earth's biosphere, atmosphere, oceans and soil, operating in a cybernetic or feedback system to ensure an optimal environment for life. Evidence for the theory is based on three main findings of remarkable stability: • the percentage of oxygen in the atmosphere • the percentage of salt in the oceans • the mean temperature of the planet 1. The atmosphere is the key: according to the laws of chemistry and physics, the gases in a planet's atmosphere should react to form stable compounds and settle into an equilibrium, or steady state. The Martian atmosphere is just such an equilibrium. Earth's atmosphere is different because of the continuous injection of gases and energy into the atmosphere by the planet's plants and animals. Most important, the amount of oxygen in the earth's atmosphere remains virtu- ally constant, at about 21%. If the oxygen level dropped more than a few percentage points, many organisms would die. If it should climb as high as 25%, fires would burn out of control. What keeps the atmosphere's oxygen content constant, within this narrow margin that makes life possible? How has Earth maintained this vital balance, supporting life? 2. The ocean's salt content, 3.5% by weight, is also regulated. Five hundred megatons of salt run off into the oceans every year. Why doesn't ocean water get saltier? Scientists used to think it did. Now it is known that salinity remains con- stant, no matter how many megatons of salt are added annually. Were the salinity to climb from 3.5% to 4%, most ocean-dwelling organisms would die. At 6%, virtually all would die. Lovelock's answer is that since life began the salinity of the oceans has been under biological control. Whales, phytoplankton, micro-organisms and the great coral reefs all seem to play a part in this complex control system. Lovelock explains how the complex ocean system of biological control works. 3. The earth's average surface temperature has remained relatively constant, between 50 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit, even during the Ice Ages. This, despite the fact that over the course of 3.5 billion years of life on earth, the sun's output of energy may have increased by as much as 30%! Why didn't earth's water freeze? asked Lovelock. Why didn't it boil away? It seemed inconceiv- able that chance alone could have so finely regulated these conditions to keep the planet in an optimal, hospitable state for life. Just as our bodies are homeostatic, self-regulating systems, so that we can adapt and survive our winters or endure our summers, earth is homeostatic, he concluded. The biosphere, including the atmos- phere and the oceans and land, operates as a living organism, automatically coordinating its vital systems to compensate for environmental changes or threats. For those of you who want a closer and deeper look at the scientific work undergirding all of this, see the references following this article. My guess is that there are many readers who feel intuitively the truth of Lovelock's thesis. Indeed, some of you may be saying (and with good cause) what's so new about this? The Native Americans have always known it. Marcus Aure- lius, the Roman stoic, wrote "Always think of the universe as one living organism, with a single substance and a single soul," and addressed the universe thus, "O world, I am in tune with every note of thy great harmony. For me, nothing is early, nothing late, if it be timely for thee." Thoreau felt Earth to be living, and denied a clear distinction between organic and inorganic parts of earth. Other thinkers who have postulated Earth as a living organism include Lewis Thomas and Gregory Bateson. The farmer's common sense wisdom has always been, "You take care of the land and the land will take care of you." Nevertheless, Lovelock's ideas were met first by silence and neglect, then derision, from many. Since the concept appealed to many religious and ecologically minded folks, this fact further alien- ated that part of the scientific community that likes to consider itself hard-nosed. Their reason- ing (if you can call it that) is that if the mystics climb on the bandwagon, there must be some- thing wrong with the wagon. And if an idea becomes trendy, many scientists have been trained to look at it with skepticism if not cyni- cism. But among his admirers are such emi- nences as Rene Dubos, the microbiologist, Philip Morrison, the physicist, and Lewis Thomas, author of Lives of a Cell. Lovelock's theory em- phasizes such potential selective forces as coop- eration and symbiosis that are frequently over- looked by more traditional evolutionary thinkers. Natural selection does not preclude cooperation as an evolutionary force along with predation, competition, etc. Any factor that tends to maxi- mize birthrates and acts unequally on members of a population can have evolutionary impact.. .i.e., "cooperative" members of a popula- tion could be selected for. The fact that his theo- ries appeal to religious folks (or ecofeminists) surprised Lovelock but was no problem; he sees it as a great organizing principle to bring to- gether people who don't normally talk to each other: biologists, geochemists, atmospheric scien- tists, to ask profound questions about how we got here and how the system works. A paradigm shift is in process. Fifty years have passed since Heisenberg, Bohr and Einstein made Newtonian thinking obsolete, but popular con- sciousness is only now catching up. Only in recent years with such books as The Tao of Phys- ics, The Turning Point and Uncommon Wisdom by Fritjof Capra have the social-philosophical impli- cations of the new physics become clearer. In Capra's books he has argued that the universe can only be understood as a cosmic dance of unity, beyond the world of opposites, and that this historical moment can only be understood as a great shift away from Newtonian concepts and laws to a new understanding of dynamic interac- tion. The new paradigm is now emerging in various places simultaneously. What is our role as human beings if the GAIA hypothesis is correct? Lovelock writes: "As the transfer of power to our species pro- ceeds, our responsibility for maintaining homeo- stasis grows with it, whether we are conscious of the fact or not." "Unlike Stone Age Man, we now have the capac- ity to collect, store and process information, then use it to interact with the environment." The Chinese character for CRISIS combines the ideographs for danger and opportunity. We are indeed at such a crisis, such a turning point, confronting both danger and opportunity. Will enough of us understand soon enough to prevent the destruction of the tropical rain forests which send essential oxygen into the atmosphere? To prevent the drilling and destruction of the off- shore continental plates which provide the micro- organisms that may regulate the ocean's salinity? "To what extent is our collective intelligence also a part of Gaia? Do we, as a species, constitute a Gaian nervous system, a brain which can con- sciously anticipate environmental changes? Our increasingly subtle and complex communication network has vastly increased Gaia's range of perception. She is now, through us, awake and aware of herself.. .It may be that the destiny of human kind is to become tamed, so that the fierce, destructive, and greedy forces of tribalism and nationalism are fused into a compulsive urge to belong to the commonwealth of all creatures which constitute Gaia." Industrial civilization will die hard. But changes are coming. WE caused them. As planet manag- ers, the human race has far to go. We still don't know enough! It's too late to be smug, self- satisfied and ignorant; but it's not too late to start. It is now our moral responsibility to be intelligent. We can't predict how the biosphere will react. Only one thing is sure: Gaia will do something. Even earthquakes and volcanoes are related to biological forces. Species either adapt to environmental changes, or die. We must all become earth system scientists, understanding that studies of climate can only be meaningful if the entire biosphere — forests, oceans, bacteria, atmosphere, humans — are all studied together in interaction. We are all cells in her body. "The most beautiful object I have ever seen in a photograph, in all my life, is the planet Earth seen from the distance of the moon, hanging there in space, obviously alive. Although it seems at first glance to be made up of innumer- able separate species of living things, on closer examination every one of its working parts, including us, is interdependently connected to all the other working parts. It is, to put it one way, the only truly closed ecosystem any of us knows about. To put it another way, it is an organism. It came alive, I shall guess, 3.8 billion years ago today, and I wish it a happy birthday and a long life ahead, for our children and their grandchildren and theirs and theirs." (- Lewis Thomas) Part II: Interviewing Scientists It's hard to induce most academic scientists to discuss Lovelock. They seem to be embarrassed by him and made uncomfortable by his popular- ity, which makes him suspect. In my search for opinions, criticism or analysis, I most frequently heard "don't know anything about him," or "never heard of him,". ..and I thought I heard the implication "...and don't want to." Their reluc- tance and distaste are perfectly expressed by Vicky Meller, Ph.D., biology, who was kind enough to respond with this comment: "I know nothing about the Gaia Hypothesis, but what I've heard bothers me. Why must we evoke what is patently a theologic argument to induce people to do what should be common sense, to take care of the planet? The ends appear the same - you convince people that their actions have far reaching consequences because of the interdependence of systems within the biosphere - as those touted by con- servationists, ecologists, population biologists and epidemiologists for dozens of years. I feel it is desperately important that the findings of independent researchers on the environment be listened to, and their warnings heeded. I feel it equally important that this crucial area of research not become dominated by a pseudo- science. Gaia is trendy and seems to be market- able to a certain section of the population. Too bad the facts were never good enough to capture the imagination of those people. I'd certainly rather have people running around talking about Gaia and recycling their trash than unaware of our environmental crisis. But do you have to distance an issue from reality before it receives public support in the U.S. today? For ten years our government has rewritten reality on political, social and environmental issues (to say nothing of the economy). Has that negated the value of researched findings? Is Gaia the most accurate representation of the biosphere that will stick in the American mind in 1990? The biosphere is a defined thing with certain properties. It is fragile, endangered, and should be respected. Gaia is a make-believe thing. If it changes the world for the better, I'm all for it." As I spent a day walking the corridors and knocking on doors, asking my colleagues to enlighten me: "Do you know any evidence for the theory of Lovelock?" a few generous souls were willing to chat awhile. Mohammed Kishta, Ph.D., Science Education, spoke in terms of an Islamic perspective on science. "The Greeks tried to imprison the world to isolate it from the Creator, so as to study it objectively. I believe their efforts failed, and nature cannot be independent from its Creator. In Islam there is no division between science and faith. Islam challenges us to find a single instance of disharmony or irregularity in nature. If Lov- elock considers nature as purposeful, orderly and good, and if man is or could be an agent of good will to all living things, then I agree with him." And one of my colleagues said, off the record, "If there is a system like this, it will have to get rid of us." Another, quoting Lord Eric Ashby and adapting John Donne, said "Any tree's death diminishes me." "We are a spoiled, wasteful nation.. .a throwaway society." Then I found Jon Mendelson, Ph.D., zoology, resident ecologist, in his office and found what I'd been looking for. We found a quiet lounge space and talked at length. "There's still a basic tension between economic development and ecological responsibility. The man-centered vision of the world is total eco- nomic development: streets, houses, streetlights, shopping malls. But we have to limit growth. The non-statement of our video conference was that growth and expansion are not good. The point wasn't made that limits to growth is the only way to go." This is a man who lives his understanding. A city boy, he grew up in Manhattan, was trained at Harvard, coming into ecology via sociology, anthropology and social psychology. After Har- vard he entered Columbia Law School, and one fine day as he was walking to a class (which he "creatively hated") he saw his first blue jay at age 22. He dropped out of law school, got a Peterson field guide and a bike, and began to study birds in Central Park. He moved to Wisconsin, studied chemistry, biology and did his Ph.D. in ichthyol- ogy. The period of 1965-1972 was the time of student activism. Aldo Leopold was influential and those "radical hippie freaks living in the country." "Now I'm living in the country in a farm hand- built by a Bohemian immigrant in the early 1900s. We have no plumbing or central heating. We hand pump water (it takes 40 pumps to bring up five gallons of water) and have an outhouse. Our life is one of minimal impact on the environ- ment and maximum human input. It's labor intensive, exactly what I want. Our big organic garden, 3000 square feet, is a 'dry garden,' using rain water, compost, and no pesticides and no herbicides." The conversation turned to the water table: is there a problem? "There is a very serious problem, a big draw- down of the aquifer. Well-drillers are required to state the character of the soil, the substrate. In the past, surficial layers were reported. Now, they drill 180 feet into bedrock to find water. Streams go dry, no longer fed by springs, which have dried up. Ninety percent of Deer Creek is treated effluent from the sewage plant. How many small sewage treatment plants are filtering into the water tables? It's a chronic, slow contamination of the aquifer, and it's nationwide." Dr. Mendelson admits that he has an opportunity that is not available to the vast majority of people who are trapped by urban sprawl, and adds, "People, even with the best of intentions, are often locked into behavior destructive of the environment by economic forces seemingly beyond anyone's control." About the rainforest, he says, "The moisture that sustains it is pumped back into the atmosphere by the trees themselves. Remove the forest and the cycle is broken. All that water will run off the land, clogging rivers and streams with the products of erosion. The soils here are basic in pH, so that water passing through them removes silica leaving high con- centrations of iron and aluminum. Only the organic matter produced by the forest keeps them loose and friable. Remove the trees and the soil compacts to a cement-like consistency, use- less for agriculture. One solution is being at- tempted in Costa Rica (by David Janzen), a large scale effort to balance legitimate economic needs of human community with the maintenance of natural ecosystems in all their incredible diver- sity." It's refreshing to see this colleague; with his sun- bleached hair, and his year-round tanned face, his ready-to-go outdoor gear, he seems like someone about to take you on a white-water canoe trip in Maine. He grew up on stories like "Freddie the Pig," stories about animals that could talk, and their gruff, benevolent farmer. Now he has become that farmer. He teaches ornithology, aquatic ecology, plant ecology. ..and statistics. On his own time he gardens and plays the piano (studies with Art Hodes) has three daughters, and sells the pro- duce that he and his wife raise at the Co-Op. "Life must be universally present," he concludes. "How could you stop it? It grows like weeds wherever the conditions are right. Will humans disappear? It doesn't matter. We're not the whole show." The rest of this issue fills you in on the many conferences and events that surrounded Earth Day, including both the dimensions of public policy and personal experience; the linguistic roots of Gaia; poetry and two reviews of an important book, The Death of Nature by Carolyn Merchant. Many friends helped us to assemble these pieces; special thanks to Jane Heckman who recorded Riane Eisler and sent the tape to us, and to Marylu Raushenbush who attended the Soviet- American Citizen Summit II in Moscow in January and recruited the papers read there by Rosemary Matson and JoAnn Cannon.Look for our next issue in which we'll begin a new feature, "Life Stories." HEH For further reading: Gribbin, John (ed.) The Breathing Planet. A New Scientist Guide. New York: Basil Blackwell, Ltd., 1986. Lovelock, J.E. Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979. Lovelock, James. The Aqes of Gaia: A Biography of Our Living Earth. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1988. Myers, Norman (ed.) Gaia: An Atlas of Planet Management. New York: Anchor Press /Doubleday & Company, 1984. SECTION I FIVE CONFERENCES ON THE ENVIRONMENT EARTH DAY CHICAGO, APRIL 22, 1990 Women, Gaia and Ecology Riane Eisler My subject is "Women, Gaia and Ecology: Our Partnership with Nature " and I'm going to be talking about connections. Connections have been the theme of my work. And those of you who know the The Chalice and the Blade know why I've been invited here. It deals with the ecological movement in a much larger context, in a context of a major social shift. This shift is from what I call the Dominator to a Partnership way of living. And I'm also going to put what's happening today in an even bigger context — the context of thousands of years of our cultural evolution, in terms of very important information we're now reclaiming from archaeology. What we today call an ecological consciousness, in other words, rather than a conquest and domina- tion way of dealing with nature, a way of seeing nature with respect and even reverence, is really not new. It's a very ancient tradition. The British archaeologist James Mellaart calls it veritable revolution in archaeology, and we are finding out about this ancient heritage. And I don't think it's 8 coincidental that we're reclaiming this knowl- edge now, because we need to have it. Our Partnership with Nature is the theme of Gaia which is the name that the Greeks gave to the Goddess of Earth and the Mother of the Gods, who has come down to us as Mother Earth, Mother Nature. And it's not coincidental that today we're finding that the idea of Gaia was not invented by the Greeks. We're finding out the worship of Gaia is very ancient. Some of you may be familiar with the theory called the Gaia hypothesis; it's the scientific theory proposed by two biologists, Lynn Mar- gulis and James Lovelock. What they're propos- ing is that the earth is not an inanimate object to be conquered and exploited, to be used and abused, that it's a living system that gives life, that sustains life, that nurtures life. Now the fascinating thing is that this revolutionary scien- tific theory is actually an update of the belief system of an earlier society which saw the earth as a living goddess to be revered, to be respected in the same way as they saw the body of woman. Not as an object to be abused and used, but as sacred and life giving and life sustaining, to be revered and to be respected. So I said to you that I was going to talk about connections, and I'm going to tell you that what we begin to see as we look at this ecological movement in this larger context is a shift in how we relate to ourselves, to our bodies, to other people, to other nations and also to nature, of course. If we look at the whole system shift we see that there are connections and, as important as it is for us to recycle, as important as it is for us not to put any more aerosol out into the biosphere, that by itself will not do it. As a matter of fact, that is not sustain- able by itself, because what we're talking about is a whole social system and you can't graft a sound ecological balance to a fundamentally unbalanced system which has been based on the notion that men should be socialized for con- quest and domination, be it of women, other men, other nations or nature. Men are clearly capable of caring and of nurtur- ing, and we see it every day with the new fa- thers. It's not an issue of women against men or men against women, but if s an issue of social structure that affects everything in our lives, and it's a issue of no longer relegating the caring and the cleaning to one half of humanity. Clearly men can be just as nurturing as women and clearly men can also clean! One of the things I want to share with you is something that I have to say but only as a half-joke which is that women would not have created nuclear waste with no idea of where to put it! The problem is that we've got to start bringing up both our daughters and our sons to be ecologically responsible at home, because otherwise we perpetuate this nonsense of men feeling inclined to make a mess, be it at home or on the planet, because somebody's going to come along (somebody female!) and clean it up. That's a stereotype. Are you begin- ning to see some of the connections? There are very important partnership trends in our society today and a shift toward a view of the earth as something not to be exploited but to be treated with respect, in partnership if you will. That's a very important part of it. But that's not enough. Because it will not be rooted in the whole belief system or in the institutional system or in the ways that we live in our daily lives on this planet. So we really need to take a look now at some of the specific things, and one of them of course is the politics of housework and that's not just a peripheral woman's issue — that is a hu- man issue, an ecological issue, dealing with the whole issue of the stereotypical socialization of boys for domination and conquest, the whole image of men who have to suppress their caring parts. And that, too is a very important part of this social shift from domination to partnership. And we really need to get away from the sexual stereotypes because you cannot graft ecological consciousness onto a way of living that's funda- mentally unbalanced, that's based on the domi- nation of one-half of humanity over the other. After all, that's all that men and women are — we are the two halves of humanity. And we also have to look again at the whole issue of rape. Because the rape of our planet and the rape of women are part of the same domina- tor system, aren't they? And it's a suicidal system because at a certain level of technological devel- opment, and we're rapidly approaching it, the mix of a dominator society and high technology, takes us to a evolutionary dead end. But the problem is not technology, the problem is how we use technology, and whether it's in a context of a dominator or a partnership society. I also want to say to you that we hear a great deal about honoring the diversity of nature, and respecting that diversity, and not killing the dolphins and the elephants, but if we do not honor and respect our diversity as humans, beginning with the most fundamental difference which is the difference between women and men, then we don't have a system that honors diver- sity. What we must try to break away from today is a social system that is based on ranking: the ranking of men over women; men over men; of nation over nation; or man over nature. And what we're trying to move towards, and we've come quite a way already, is a partnership model, beginning with the most fundamental difference in our species, which is the difference between female and male, without which we couldn't go on. Difference is not equated with inferiority or superiority but, on the contrary, difference is honored and celebrated. So the partnership society is not the society where everything is the same. It's a society of equality of opportunity but not of sameness, contrary to a dominator society in which conformity is de- manded even in how you think. 1984 gave you the scenario for the dominator society. Not coincidentally, Orwell's 1984 was a male-domi- nated society. Now again I want to say this is not a issue of women against men; whatever you take away from my talk today, that's not it. That's not what it's about. It's about valuing our differences beginning with that fundamental difference, then we can value racial difference and we can value cultural difference and we can truly value the splendor of the variety of the natural habitat on this planet. Now, these are early societies that we are now rediscovering, that I deal with in some detail in The Chalice and the Blade, these findings of archae- ologists James Melaart, and Marija Gimbutas at UCLA, and Nicolas Platon who excavated the Minoan civilization of Crete which is the last known historical civilization which was based on the partnership model. This information, which is causing a big furor in the archaeological commu- nity today, challenges so many of the old as- sumptions; this information challenges the story that domination and conquest are inevitable, that male dominance and warfare are inevitable. This information is very important to us today be- cause it verifies so much of what so many of us have really known inside — that we don't have to live in this miserable and tense way. Look at what's happening in society today, for example, with millions of people saying, "we all seem to come from dysfunctional families." Now of course that's the dominator family. It's very appropriate for the dominator model of society, isn't it, but it's totally inappropriate for the kind of society that we need, which is a partnership society and so this awareness of dysfunctional families is a tremendously important partnership trend. Now I don't mean to say that there's no domina- tor resistance. There's tremendous dominator resistance, but the important thing is that once we begin to understand the connections, it isn't all such a confusing mush. We begin to see that, yes, there is a relationship between rape and wife beating and child beating and the rape of nature and warfare and the fact that we're on the brink of destroying our planet; that these dominator ways don't work, and a lot of what's happening in our time is not random and disconnected. Be it in our attempts to change our family relations, particularly in our attempt to move more toward a partnership between women and men, be it in our understanding that the nuclear age is obso- lete, or be it in our increasing understanding that we have to have a whole new way of living with nature. In partnership. So this information is empowering. It has been for me. And it has been for many other people who are able to use it to find intervention points, who are able to think now in a more systems way and who also now have the information that we can create a less tense, more balanced, sustainable, future. We did it once before. There was a shift in our pre- history from the ancient partnership which archeology is now documenting, to a dominator society. But it (the dominator model) has lasted only for a relatively short time in evolutionary terms, less than 5,000 years. In evolutionary time, that's very little. We could think of it in terms of the "dominator detour." It's a detour that could take us to a evolutionary dead end. But we also have the realistic possibility not to break down but to break through. Not to go back to the so- called good old days, but to use the best modern technology in the context of a partnership society so that we can in fact construct for ourselves and our children a far more satisfying, more respect- ful and sustainable way of living in partnership, not only with nature, but with one another. I thank you. Riane Eislcr is an internationally known scholar in peace and feminist issues, a futurist, a lecturer, an attorney, and codirector of the Center for Partnership Studies. She is the author of Dissolution: No Fault Divorce, Marriage, and the Future of Women, The Equal Rights Handbook, and her most well known book, The Chalice and the Blade. 10 Conference: International Women's Writing Guild Washington D.C. RINGING THE GONG Cynthia Ogorek The worst blizzard of the winter hit in late Febru- ary, the morning I left for the International Women's Writing Guild conference in Washing- ton, D.C. However, my before-dawn trek was rewarded some 800 miles east and south of here by sunshine and early daffodils outside the B&B where I stayed. The bigger reward for the effort, however, was the conference itself and the National Museum of Women in the Arts where it was held. The conference was titled "Ringing the Gong: Writing to Change the World/The Environment." About one hundred women, mostly from the east coast, gathered there to find out how we could improve our writing when it comes to environ- mental issues. We started the day in the Museum's pink, white and gray auditorium, with exercises to flex the mental muscles. As the audience relaxed, we offered our comments which included local projects such as home sales parties for environ- mentally safe products and stories about how our children are reacting to the realities of toxic waste dumps and acid rain. Lunch was buffet-style. On the mezzanine, in an environment of pink and white marble and enormous crystal chandeliers, we met informally to exchange "war stories" and some success stories about how things had improved at least in our neighborhoods, if not globally. The afternoon session was billed as a "pot- pourri," and the highlight was the welcoming speech given by Hannelore Hahn, executive director and founder of IWWG. The speech in its entirety appears in these pages and I hope it will inspire you, as it has me, to "forage." To forage, as a writer and as a citizen of the world, for the words and ideas that will convince those not already convinced that every day is Earth Day. EXERCISES TO DEVELOP WRITING AWARENESS How does a writer get started? How does she make sure her readers understand her concerns about the state of our environment? One of the most valuable sessions in that respect was the presentation by L. W. Peat O'Neil, assistant to the editor of the Washington Post Style section. O'Neil also writes a twice-weekly col- umn on volunteering and teaches writing. Peat O Neil She has developed three exercises to get the creative juices flowing in writers, both the profes- sionals and those who simply take pleasure in writing letters to the editors. For the conference, she tailored the exercises to fit writing about the environment. Our goal as environmental writers, she said, was to get through to editors and ultimately to the people who wreck our environment. "There is a responsibility to bring other people along with us," she said. Writers can get people to change. We just have to be creative. Exercise 1. Getting the vocabulary. Take a few quiet minutes and write down every word or phrase you associate with earth and nature. Some of the audience's responses were: biode- gradable, harmony, partnership with the earth, serenity, generation and renewal, trees, water, symbiotic relationship, the notion of being grounded or centered. Save your list and add to it. "Use the list to charge you up," she said, when you write to change the environment. 11 Exercise 2. Stepping Stones. Try to remember six or seven events in your life that had to do with your relationship to the environment. Do you camp? Did you make firefly rings as a child? (Even the not-so-pretty memories can be useful.) Do you have a favorite tree? Have you participated in an Earth Day celebration? This exercise will help you focus your thoughts and ideas about the environment and the issues of the day. It will also increase your future awareness of nature and your spiritual participa- tion with the environment. Exercise 3. Noticing. Describe the environment for someone who thinks of the earth as something to be exploited or decimated. This final exercise will encourage you to harness the vocabulary and anecdotes of the previous two in ways that will help your readers visualize your concerns and solutions. Sometimes, said O'Neil, you have to "treat the corporations like children who need to be trained." of life on earth in the 21st century. For more information about the series and, in particular, how it can be used in the classroom, contact Anne Blackburn, Outreach Coordinator, "Race to Save the Planet," WGBH Educational Foundation, 125 Western Avenue, Boston, MA 02134. THE ALLIANCE TO SAVE ENERGY 1725 K Street, N.W., Suite 914 , Washington, D.C. 20006 Carol Mulholland, Director of Communications The Alliance is a non-profit coalition of government, business, consumer and labor leaders dedicated to increasing the efficiency of energy use. They conduct research and pilot projects and use this information to formulate policy initia- tives and to conduct educational programs in the areas of environment, affordable housing, competitiveness, national security and economic development. AMERICAN COUNCIL FOR AN ENERGY-EFFICIENT ECONOMY 1001 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 535 Washington, D.C. 20036 Marc Ledbetter, Senior Associate Offers a catalog of their publications regarding energy conservation as well as a pamphlet explaining their work. A POTPOURRI OF SOURCES OF INFORMA- TION ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES Besides networking among the writers, the afternoon session gave us the opportunity to gather resources for writing about the environ- ment. We heard from representatives of the many environmental agencies at work in the country. They explained their goals and the types of research material they made available to the public. The first speaker was Anne Blackburn, National Outreach Coordinator of WGBH-TV in Boston. She presented video-clips from "Race to Save The Planet," a series of 10 one-hour programs that will be broadcast this fall on public television stations throughout the country. The series is the cornerstone of public television's Operation Earth campaign, she explained. The campaign is a "multifaceted" effort to focus attention on the environment. The concept for the programs came out of Worldwatch Institute's "State of the World" reports and will feature programs on population growth, soil erosion, deforestation, climate changes induced by human activity and indi- viduals around the world who are making the critical decisions that will determine the quality 12 AMERICAN WIND ENERGY ASSOCIATION 1730 North Lynn Street, #610, Arlington, Virginia 22209 Dianne Eppler, Director of Operations AUDUBON NATURALIST SOCIETY 801 Pennsylvania S.E., Washington, D.C. 20003 Connie Mahan, Grass Roots Coordinator Pamphlet available regarding public policy, activism, science and education. Also a bimonthly newsletter called "Activ- ist." BETTER WORLD SOCIETY 1100 17th Street, N.W., Suite 502, Washington, D.C. 20036 Glen Olds, President CONCERNED CITIZENS FOR NUCLEAR SAFETY OF SANTA FE P.O. Box 1273, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504 Mary Lou Cook, private citizen Ms. Cook delivered an address which explained her group's tactics in preventing the construction of a nuclear waste dump in the Santa Fe area. THE ENERGY CONSERVATION COALITION 1525 New Hampshire Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20036 Nicholas A. Fedoruk, Director EARTHSTEWARDS NETWORK 6202 Seminole Place, Berwyn Heights, Maryland 20740 Ted Lefkowitz, Urban Peace Trees Project Coordinator Sponsors an international exchange program for kids which teaches them about the environment and how other coun- tries approach the problems. ENVIRONMENTAL AND ENERGY STUDY INSTITUTE 122 C Street, N.W., #700, Washington, D.C. 20001 Beth Nalker. Fact sheet available describing how it keeps Congress informed about environmental issues. ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE FUND 1616 P Street, N.W., Suite 150, Washington, D.C. 20036 Lois Epstein, Environmental Engineer GLOBAL TOMORROW COALITION 1325 G Street, N.W., Suite 915, Washington, D.C. 20005-3104 Terry D'Addio, Director, Management Services Newsletter, 'Interaction" GREEN LIBRARY 1918 Bonita Avenue, Berkeley, California 94704 Green Library provides ecological and environmental literature to people in areas hit by ecological crisis. It also promotes education and public commitment by assisting with the establishment of ecological libraries in those areas. Green Library's goals are to establish a network of environ- mental libraries, to promote ecological education and to participate in initiatives designed to improve the quality of life. The organization is looking for groups to sponsor and/ or house such libraries and for donations of appropriate books and literature. GREENPEACE 1436 U Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009 Blair Palese, Media Department Publishes "FutureFile," a newsletter and "Greenpeace News," releases about Greenpeace activities and events. NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION 1400 16th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036-2266 Ann Krumboltz, Director, Earth Day Programs Dena Leibman, Office of Legislative Affairs Among other things, this group publishes "Conservation 90" every three weeks when Congress is in session in order to keep its members informed about legislative action on environmental issues. NATIONAL WOOD ENERGY ASSOCIATION 1730 N. Lynn Street, Suite 610, Arlington, Virginia 22209 S. Rupp, U.S. Export Council for Renewable Energy BIOLOGUE, the group's magazine, publishes industry news, biomass energy program reports and new technology information. NATIONAL RESOURCES DEFENSE COUNCIL 1350 New York Avenue, N.W., #300, Washington, D.C. 20012 Jessica Landman, Attorney THE NATURE CONSERVANCY 1815 N. Lynn Street, Arlington, Virginia 22209 Ron Gaetz, Media Relations Manager Pamphlet and magazine available. The organization sponsors an international program (with local chapters) to protect rare plants and animals. It finds the money to buy endangered areas and hold them until proper care or management can be found. SOLAR ENERGY INDUSTRIES ASSOCIATION 1730 N. Lynn Street, Suite 610, Arlington, Virginia 22209 Linda Ladas, Director of Programs Sandy Rupp, Manager/Editor, Newsletter Offers Catalog of Nenewable Energy Publications. U.S. PUBLIC INTEREST RESEARCH GROUP 215 Pennsylvania Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. 20003 Ellen H. Taggart, Assistant to Executive Director Publishes U.S. Pirg Citizen Agenda, a quarterly, which covers various state and national organizations in regard to environmental issues. U.S. EXPORT COUNCIL FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY 12713 Gordon Boulevard, #86, Woodbridge, Virginia 22192 This is an umbrella organization for U.S. renewable energy industries associations. It promotes renewable energy exports such as alcohol fuels, biomass, geothermal, hydro- power, photo voltaics, solar thermal, wind and wood. Information for businesses attempting to export such products or services. WORLDWATCH INSTITUTE 1776 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036 Magazine, pamphlet. Purpose is to inform policymakers and general public about interdependence of world economy and its environmental support systems. WorldWIDE News World Women in Environment 1250 24th Street, N.W., 4th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20037 Purpose is to help women at all levels of society participate in the protection of the environment and in the management of natural resources. To this end they publish the above- mentioned newsletter, are establishing a worldwide network, educating the public and policymakers, promoting the inclusion of women and their environmental perceptions in the design and implementation of development policies, and generally mobilizing and supporting women involved in these activities. 13 Conference: International Women's Writing Guild Washington D.C. IN MY OWN WORDS Hannelore Hahn U*MW We were in the right place at the right time with the "Ringing the Gong: Writing to Change the World/the Environment" conference at the National Museum of Women in the Arts on February 24, 1990 in Wash- ington, D.C. It was an electrifying event, comprising 100 attendees and 25 representatives of major envi- ronmental organizations. It is a first for the International Women's Writing Guild — taking on an issue: the issue of the environ- ment. And because of that, I felt I myself needed to ring the gong. Here are my words of welcome: I am honored to welcome you to this Environ- mental Forum and to the Guild. I know you share with me the desire to move toward solu- tions pertaining to our environment. We are all gathered here in accord on this and wish for the same outcome. Many of you, however, do not know each other. Hence, one of the purposes of this gathering is, of course, to further the network and to strengthen our cause. Many of you, also, may not know much about the network which called this convening. Allow me, therefore, to say a few words about The International Women's Writing Guild, which, in turn, will impact on this afternoon and our shared goals. 14 First, I will say something about women. I feel that women are greatly privileged to have been born at a time which allows us to be part of a revolution or — as I prefer to call it — an evolu- tion. It is an evolution which has led us first and foremost in these past two decades towards a new sense of self. And it is this honing of a sense of self — as a woman and as a person — which, as you will see, intimately and importantly connects the IWWG with what has been happening to women's consciousness. And this connection, in the case of the IWWG, has to do with writing. The Guild has always supported the writing of personal experience. Not only from the point of literature, but essentially and foremost for the honing of that sense of self. Ever since the Guild was founded in 1976, it has been an open door to any woman who wished, through writing, to re- experience, to re-define herself and her life through writing and to move on. In this way, the Guild contributes importantly and lastingly to the betterment of personal as well as social health and to the personal and professional empower- ment of women. And this kind of deep inner empowerment brings courage. And courage leads me to mention leadership. I think we will all agree that there are too many people in leadership positions today who have not been part of this inner cleansing. And by not having gone through this process, these people act in reactive ways, projecting old personal wounds into subjects that call for adult, mature and enlightened solutions. Such people are also adept at hiding their immature selves behind standard behavior of so-called objectivity, so- called impartiality and by pulling rank. Which leads me to a documentary I recently saw on television about the so-called "new gold" in Alaska. The new gold being ice. The film showed men hacking away at icebergs, loading huge chunks of glacial "gold" into their trawlers and businessmen talking happily about how much better vodka tastes with glacial ice and touting other products such as shampoo, supposedly much improved by the newly harvested ingredi- ent. To give further substantiation to this plun- der, a representative of the state of Alaska, the man who gives out the ice harvesting permits, said that this was good for Alaska. No one brought out the obvious fact that if you keep on harvesting the glacial ice, you may contribute towards a rapid and catastrophic global warming, producing a flood which would make the most dire predictions about the end of our world come quickly true. But, even if this fact had been mentioned, would it have stopped the men in the trawlers? This is a question. As representatives of environmental organiza- tions, you all know a lot of facts and I am sure you have experienced, and will experience in the future, the great frustration vis-a-vis well-posi- tioned opponents, whose perceptions are mired in departmentalized thinking, who cannot see a relationship of one thing to another, who cannot, or do not want to see the forest for the trees and whose often well disguised immature selves insist on the bottom line: personal gain, immedi- ate profit and the status quo. What is it then that will make the difference? Quite some time ago, I was asked by Professor Gerald Holton, a physicist at Harvard University, to translate The Scientific Correspondence of Albert Einstein. The letters were then on deposit at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Princeton and, before transferring the correspondence to Israel, which Einstein had stipulated in his will, a translation of them was initiated. It was a fasci- nating work and took me into the first two decades of our twentieth century when scientists were excitedly and openly communicating with each other via letters. One of the questions, or in- jokes of the time was: Does God play dice? In other words, is the world happenstance, or is there order and purpose in the universe? That was the question. Max Born was a physicist with whom Einstein had corresponded frequently and at one point in going through their letters, I noticed a cooling off in their relationship — and then I came to this pivotal letter in which Ein- stein says to Born: 'My dear Born: As far as God playing dice is concerned, I believe in an ordered universe and in an energy that is related to that universe. But my approach in finding that order and that energy that is related to that order is in a wildly chaotic way. You, my dear Born, do not believe in an ordered universe, or in an energy related to it. But you approach chaos in a very orderly fashion.' Apples and Pears. If we translate the God play- ing dice question of that day into our present day question of the environment, it is still the same: apples and pears. From that vantage point, humanity has not changed. There were always apples and pears, believers and non-believers, hawks and doves. Therefore, if the environment is mother nature, which it is, then it is female. And it is the feminine which is being raped and up for grabs by that other energy. I am putting it crassly, but these two energies — male and female, apples and pears- -are again and still the main players in our current drama. In other words, if we are to look at the subject of the environment in the largest possible perspective, long before, or alongside the quantification of pollution, or the identification of toxic waste, we must see our dilemma in the very largest sense — as an enact- ment and re-enactment of two opposite forces: the linear, warrior male and the nurturing, cyclical female. Or call it what you will. Now here we are, a bunch of women and some enlightened men. My talk today will not address the long-range question of how do we strengthen the feminine side in men (which certainly is an evolution that is yet to come), but for the mo- ment, my question is: How do we get into the game with the present players, without becoming one of them? Or, how do we create a position of strength that will be counted by the players even though we are not one of them? I have an answer for the latter. The answer is numbers. Numbers have always weighed in politically and women have always been gather- ers. Anthropologically, we were the ones who gathered seeds, grains, berries. We always gath- ered. We know how to do that. So, let's forage. I know there are millions of voices who have to be gathered and who have not been heard. These voices, which have been silent and silenced, certainly during the 80's, are in our camp. They are our constituency. We will gather and in this decade, we will find. And now, let me take you back to the year 1963 for a moment. That was the year President Kennedy was shot. Everybody knows that. But if I am not mistaken, that was also the year a book came out: The Feminine Mystique, by Betty Friedan. I remember hearing about this book and what it was about. But I did not read it. I was at the time a single working mother hoping to re- marry. Yet, thirteen years later, that same single working mother founded The International Women's Writing Guild. (Still didn't read the book and still unmarried.) Why do I mention this? I mention it because it seems to me to be an excellent example of a case where information is available but because of personal circumstances, or of not being ready, it is seemingly not absorbed. Yet, subliminally, something did happen in the course of time. The information about the environment is on our side. Whether it is readily accepted, or even actively opposed, this should not unsettle us, 15 because, as in the example just cited, conscious- ness raising facts seep in subliminally. Perhaps, in the large scheme of things, women's consciousness had to be raised first. And now, after almost a quarter of a century, a consciousness raising on the environment on the part of all of humanity is next. One more thing: The environment is not relative. Actually, the recognition of this, seeing it this way, rings in a wondrous new beginning. It rings in the re-discovery and the re-acceptance of laws: natural laws. And of order: universal order. This is not unlike what Einstein wrote to Born some seventy-five years ago. Though, ironically, his time rang in seven and a half decades of chaos. But now, I feel the issue of the environment is ringing in a new time. Oh yes, a funny thing happened in Berlin. . . Well, no one, not even our most know-it-all pundits thought this would ever happen. Certainly not in their life time and, certainly, not in the way it did. So fast and without struggle. Well, that's what I mean. . . And with that, let us take heart, because: This is a good time, This is a fine time, And this is, indeed, our time. The International Women's Writing Guild, founded by Ms. Hahn in 1976 and guided by her as its Executive Director, is a wide network for the personal and professional empowerment of women through writing. The 5,000 strong Guild, with members throughout the United States and in 24 countries, attracts and is attuned to an enormously diverse constituency. Ms. Hahn, graduate of the University of Southern California and earlier a student at famed avant-guarde Black Mountain College, holds an honorary doctorate from Skidmore College. She is the acclaimed author of On the Way to Feed the Swans, first volume of an autobiographical trilogy. lb Conference: Soviet- American Citizen Summit on the Environment IN MOSCOW: WOMEN - PEACE - ECOLOGY Rosemary Matson At the Soviet Consulate in San Francisco, the Head of the Visa Department said, as he handed me my visa: "You women have a good meeting. Get this mess in the environment cleaned up." I said: "You men always make these messes and expect us women to clean them up." He looked startled, laughed, a little embarrassed, and an- swered: "Of course!" The Soviet Women's Committee in Moscow had called this meeting "Women - Peace - Ecology" for early last June. In their invitation to one hundred international women, they stated they wanted "to enlarge the role of women in seeking solutions to the environmental crisis currently facing our planet." Women came from 26 countries, representing a diversity of geographic, cultural and political backgrounds. Women from Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Finland, France, both Germanys: FGR and GDR. Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Roma- nia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. One woman came from Nairobi, Kenya. More than fifty Soviet women participated. It was a fascinating time to be in Moscow. The newly elected Congress was in session every day. Many things in the City were at virtual standstill as Soviet workers - sales clerks, waiters, taxi drivers - were glued to television and radios listening intently to the speeches, harangues, criticisms and suggestions that poured forth from the Peoples Delegates at the Congress. Zoya Pukhova, President of the Women's Com- mittee, is a Peoples Deputy. On the first day, she brought several women deputies to speak to us and to answer any questions we might have. They told us they were "working under condi- tions of total democracy" and would talk about "whatever we wanted to talk about." We heard from them the idea of an International Green Cross which President Gorbachev had first pro- posed on December 7, 1988 in his address to the United Nations. Based on the idea of the Interna- tional Red Cross which responds to disaster and crisis involving people, the International Green Cross would respond to disaster and crisis involving the environment anywhere in the world. Our week together included several excursions to environmental projects as well as theme talks, plenary sessions and workshops around the three themes chosen by the participants: International Security and Ecology, Health and Ecology, and International Cooperation by Women. I partici- pated in two of the workshops which spoke to my interests: one on the Brundtland Report: Our Common Future, and the second one on Eco- Feminism. The Brundtland Report is an important document but very little known in the United States. Adri- enne van Melle of the Netherlands presented the Report saying that "ecology has no borders. When we dump our garbage or poison on a poor country across the globe, it's crazy to think it won't wash up on our own shores." In 1982, the General Assembly of the United Nations asked the World Commission on Envi- ronment and Development to evaluate the causes of the breakdown of the planetary ecosphere and to produce a global agenda for change. Gro Harlem Brundtland, Prime Minister of Norway, chaired this Commission. Twenty-one nations were represented from all regions and experts in areas of foreign affairs, finance, agriculture, health and ecology participated. The Report assesses the many crises we face, i.e., global warming, depletion of the ozone layer, contami- nation of the water, destruction of forests and soil erosion, hazardous waste, loss of wildlife habitat and species, over-population, and then points out that the crises come from the military, the cost of the arms race, from development that 17 is not sustainable, from poverty and affluence, from injustice and imbalance between the haves and the have-nots. Long-term strategies for achieving a globally sustainable development to the year 2000 and beyond are proposed. Environment is defined as "where we live" and development as "what we do with our lives." The UN in accepting the Report last year, acknowledged that it must be kept at the forefront of the UN agenda, but that each nation also must be involved in fulfilling its mandate for bringing about the called-for changes. Reaction to the Report has been mixed, with some countries giving it little publicity and showing no interest. However, some countries, like Finland, have appointed a prominent com- mittee to study the Report and to draw conclu- sions about it for their country. The Soviet women reported that their government is solidly behind the Report and copies have been distrib- uted to each Republic for action by their local Councils. There is very little known about the Brundtland Report in the United States. I had difficulty obtaining a copy and got mine from Canada. The workshop on Eco-Feminism presented by my friend Hilkka Pietila of Finland was of great interest to me. Hilkka and I had exchanged articles and books on the subject and both con- sider ourselves eco-feminists. The coming to- gether of ecology and feminism involves new thinking about the environmental crises we are facing today. Eco-feminists are interested in searching for the root cause of our problems. They ask "Why have we come to this situation in the world? ...not just how to put out the fires that are raging around us" Hilkka said, "but who or what is starting the fires? Only when we know that, can we stop the fires." Feminism, with its new way of looking at things, reveals that it is our attitude toward the Earth, as something which is separate from us, to be conquered, used, dominated, that is the basis of the problem. The system of patriarchy we live under ranks everything in order of power and importance. The hierarchical chain of command that perme- ates all of our social institutions ranks male over female, adults over children, owner over worker, rich over poor, have over have-nots, human over non-human Nature. It incorporates the right of the human to treat non-human Nature as private property and material wealth to be dominated and exploited. It is only when we can break out of this pattern of patriarchy and begin to realize that everything is interdependent on this planet, that we can begin to save it and ourselves. We are discovering today that a plant can carry out photosynthesis without human beings, but we human beings cannot exist without the photo- synthesis of the plants. We need the trees we are destroying, to give us oxygen to breathe. By cutting down the trees, we are in essence com- mitting suicide. These were new ideas to many of the women present at the meetings, but they understood the practice of domination because each woman had experienced being dominated and exploited in her life. To have an opportunity to share concerns on an international basis with our sisters was pro- foundly exciting. One point became extraordinar- ily clear to us all: we need much broader partici- pation by women, both scientists and representa- tives of environmental movements, in all negotia- tions and decision- making bodies — in the coun- cils of government and the United Nations. When the fate of the planet is decided, women must have full representation — if we are to save it. (For a more complete report of the Moscow meeting, write to Rosemary Matson, Box 1710, Carmel Valley, CA 93924.) 18 Conference: Soviet - American Citizen Summit on the Environment LISTEN THE FUTURE ANEW! JoAnn Cannon A memory often fades over time, yet I can still hear the sound as clearly as if it were last eve- ning. I was attending a crowded meeting of people from the African villages around the school where I was an early Peace Corps Volun- teer. Issues were being discussed that would affect the whole community. Sitting outside in the cooler night air with a few others, I suddenly heard a sound I had never heard before in my life, a trill-like sound that started softly but began to grow with intensity. "Listen! What is that sound?" I asked with a degree of awe. Several people leaned forward, listening. When they didn't respond, I asked again, "That one there, can't you hear it?" It was frustrating trying to describe the sound that was so very distinct to me, yet seemed inaudible to them "Oh that's the women's voices!" one finally acknowledged with a nod. The realization that women in agreement and excitement made their own special sound brought silence to my own voice, in that moment so many years ago. I remember not knowing then how to express what was in my own heart. Although country, language, color, custom and culture ostensibly divided us, there was a sound being made that was of my own identity as a woman and bonded me with them. The tone I heard rang with unity of purpose and power and had a dash of celebration and encouragement. I knew the issues discussed in the village that night would affect everyone, even as yet unborn generations, and I wanted to say out loud. . . "YES, IT IS THOSE VOICES OF WOMEN TO- GETHER THAT CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE HERE!" As a participant in the "Women for Change" Task Force of the 1990 Soviet- American Summit in Moscow, I am clear how "OUT-LOUD" that message still needs to be said, believed, and acted upon. Across the planet, no matter where you look, you can find a woman setting a new pace, pointing to different priorities, reasserting lost values, asking additional questions, grap- pling with the "whys" and asserting Mother Earth's interests. Yet to some governments, some businesses, some organizations, among some men, and yes, even among some women, such a woman may still be inaudible or invisible. But look and see, her presence will be making a difference! I am clear that the women around the world seeking to take greater responsibility for their own and the earth's affairs, with all the risks involved, have not done so for economic reasons alone. There is a felt need in every society to DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY! Bringing resources and leadership to the things that will make for a peaceful and sustainable global environment is essential to explore. This last year we have seen some impressive examples of what women contribute when narrow perspectives are shed and faces turn together toward values that will be needed in the 21st century. Japanese women became a force to show their own Prime Minister the exit off-ramp. Young women were leaders in the Democracy Movement in China. Women in Kenya are re- thinking economics, if the bottom line for profits results in the decimation of a species as elegant as the elephant. European women have taken committed leadership roles toward total nuclear disarmament on behalf of our entire planet. Men and women working co-creatively, who bring a transitional and transgenerational per- spective, become beacons and examples. What will we be showing each other and ourselves in this coming decade? What we do, and value and support has long-term effect. Our planet is shrinking and the skeleton of our interconnec- tions is now apparent. It has been the deep sharing of women's voices in heart to heart dialogues, plus telling the truth about our lives and concerns, that paved the way for many of the strides experienced to date. We are entering a decade during which it will be critical to start anew, listening and talking hon- estly with one another and the men in our lives. Some of the gains we have so painstakingly made this century on behalf of all women and children and the planet earth could slip into oblivion like quicksand. Our dialogues must reflect varying views and a diversity of concerns and life experiences. Can we listen anew? I am reminded of the seriousness that we must have as we face the future, and also the necessity of a sense of humor about ourselves, our little egos and our chronic world condition. Women are bringing to this new decade, not only their voice, but their capacity for leadership. Not only level- headedness, but a sense of our spiritual connec- 19 tion and the gentleness and laughter that can release good will and healing. What would my heart say "out loud" today if once again I heard the sound of women's voices, as once so long ago? I would stand proudly beside each one of you who is doing your own AND the planet's business, and — along with a woman associate who wrote the following poem with me, would ask all to listen... as we say to you: JoAnn Cannon is President of Inward Bound Adventures, based in Chicago. She was a co-guest editor of our special issue on Women in the Wilderness, Spring 1981. Rise and hear the women take their part To lead the path that moves along uniting human hearts. We stand and cast our voice and mind anew, To bring balance to a world that longs to hear the Future's view. Fear enters when we leave behind the known, And tempts us to seek shelter in the past - although it's gone. But there are always a courageous few Who will risk their very beings as the old transforms to new. It's not so much a case of forging through, As following the stepping stones as they come into view, Trusting each new step will be revealed - And this might be the way in which this broken world is healed. And this might be the way in which this broken world is healed. 20 Videoconference: Corporate America and the Environment LIVE FROM GOVERNORS STATE UNIVERSITY - CORPORATE AMERICA AND THE ENVIRONMENT Sally Petrilli Panelists from left, Jerry B. Martin, Dow Chemical U.S.A., host Bill Curtis, WBBM-TV/CBS in Chicago, William J. Schwalm, Polaroid Corporation, and Shelley Yastrow, MacDonald's Corporation. You take some chances when you produce a live television event with panelists across the country. You take the chance that a panelist won't show up, that the discussion will occasionally wander off the point or a caller will ask a different ques- tion than the one you're expecting, that some- thing will go wrong with a satellite feed. You also hope that the technology will be mostly invisible, allowing the focus to be where it be- longs - on the content of the program. All these things happened during Corporate America and the Environment - a national videoconference that originated from Governors State University in April. Moderated by Bill Kurtis of WBBM-TV/ CBS in Chicago, the talk centered around the effects on the business world of what Lester Brown of Worldwatch Institute calls, "the forces of ecological decline." Fifty-eight corporate and university sites joined the national panel, many contributing to the discussion via open phone lines. Planning for the videoconference began with identifying experts on the environment, spokes- persons for business and industry, government representatives and members of the social invest- ment community as well as case studies to illustrate successes and positive directions. We were assisted in all this by a national advisory panel that met for a day of intensive work in Washington, D.C. at the Smithsonian Institution. Interest and cooperation were high. Our camera crew went to the East and West coasts to do interviews and acquire footage to be incorporated into the videoconference. Fifteen people agreed to participate from studios in Washington, D.C, San Francisco and here in University Park. The issues covered a wide range of environ- mental concerns. Jay Hair, CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, talked about the need for leadership - from the business community, from the public and from government. He called for EPA cabinet status so that "the environment can 21 be represented at the highest level of govern- ment." Recycling and source reduction of wastes, by individuals and by corporations, was a major topic. Harold Greshowitz, Senior Vice President of Waste Management, Inc., said that "recycling is the strongest grass roots movement in the country." Jerry Martin, Director of Environ- mental Affairs for Dow Chemical and William Schwalm, Senior Manager for Environmental Programs in Polaroid's manufacturing opera- tions, talked about the cost-effectiveness of their companies' waste reduction and recycling pro- grams. Shelby Yastrow, Senior Vice President and head of the Environmental Task Force at McDonalds, described his company's efforts to meet the growing environmental awareness of consumers and to deal responsibly with environ- mental issues in the face of consumer boycotts. He said, "We have to make good decisions fast." Joel Makower, co-author of The Green Consumer, said, "Consumers are sending a message to corporate America. The market place is not a democracy. You don't need 50% to effect change - more like 15%. People are looking for ways they can vote for the environment when they open their wallets." A recurring theme was the feeling that it is in the economic self- interest of business to develop an environmental ethic. Though much of the action by corporations has been a result of "the bottom line," William Scranton, CEO of Smith and Hawken, a mail order garden supply company, agreed with the necessity for environmental leadership, adding, "We have an obligation to take a role that satisfies our own conscience and that of people we work with and this cannot always be market driven." And although in- volvement must begin at the boardroom level, total company participation is important. Jerry Martin commented, "Our CEO says, Tm not the chief environmentalist at Dow. I'm one of 58 thousand environmentalists.'" Senator Timothy Wirth (D-Colo) and Representa- tive John Porter (R-Ill) joined the panel from the Senate recording studio to discuss the Clean Air Bill Amendments, fortuitously up for vote that evening, and other environmental legislation. Senator Wirth faulted the automobile industry for "reflecting politics of the past" and failing to redesign the automobile to use clean fuels - "the most cost-effective way to clean our air." The Associate Administrator of the EPA, Lewis Crampton, talked about "corporate stewardship" - the need to be forthcoming with the public, to take voluntary actions beyond the law. Environmental problems are real and immediate, the answers complex. Everyone agreed that there have been successes but there is much left to be done and we will be engaging in this dialog for many decades to come. Big changes are ahead for businesses as they strive to comply with the increasing maze of environmental regulations and social pressures. The panel participants suggested that stronger regulations are needed and consumers must be willing to give up the big waste and pollution creators such as disposable diapers and inefficient automobiles. Yet a pro- active tone was set. They noted that cooperation is possible, that there can be a common meeting ground among business, consumers, environmen- talists and government. As Jay Hair put it, "It's no longer them and us. It's us." About those chances you take when you produce a videoconference; one of the panelists from the Eastern part of the country who was scheduled to join the conference from the West Coast in combination with a business trip, arrived in the San Francisco studio on Eastern time, four hours late - apologies were accepted; a lengthy question to Senator Wirth concerning the housing market, not relevant to our discussion, was quickly steered back on track; a caller, telling our phone bank that he wanted to talk about the lack of discussion on environmental ethics in his busi- ness school classes, took his on-air opportunity to talk about local water rights problems - could have been worse; and while the sound from the studio in San Francisco was lost for a while, Bill Kurtis skillfully moved the discussion elsewhere. And the final result was what we hoped it would be - three hours of lively talk and up-to-date information about the pressing environmental issues that face corporations and small businesses today. Will Governors State University do an- other live event of this stature? You bet - and the sooner the better! Sally Petrilli is an Instructional Developer in the Instructional Communications Center at Governors State University. She was involved with research and content development for the videoconference. She notes that though the planning team was alert to locating women working for environmental concerns from top management position, few were found. However, many women are working in the "grass roots" movements, the social investment community, and in research and consulting positions. Information on the purchase of copies of the videoconference is available from the Executive Producer, Mel Muchnik - In- structional Communications Center, Governors State University, University Park, IL (708) 534-5000, ext. 2313. 22 Conference: Womanquest, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, April, 1990 Suzanne Dechnik LADY OF TURNING Kendyl Gibbons Lady of the season's laughter, In the summer's warmth be near; When the winter follows after Teach our spirits not to fear. Hold us in your steady mercy Lady of the turning year. Sister of the evening star light, In the falling shadows stay Here among us till the far light Of tomorrow's dawning ray. Hold us in your steady mercy Lady of the turning day. Mother of the generations, In whose love all life is worth Everlasting celebrations, Bring our labors safe to birth. Hold us in your steady mercy Lady of the turning earth. Goddess of all times' progression, Stand with us when we engage Hands and heart to end oppression, Writing history's fairer page. Hold us in your steady mercy Lady of the turning age. words © 1990 UUA These new words, sung to an old tune ("Come and Worship") made Rev. Gibbons the Winner of the UUA Hymnbook Competition. DECLARATION OF THE FOUR SACRED THINGS A WORK IN PROGRESS Starhawk The earth is a living, conscious being. In com- pany with cultures of many different times and places, we name these things as sacred: air, fire, water, and earth. Whether we see them as the breath, energy, blood and body of the planet, or as the blessed gifts of a Creator, or as symbols of the intercon- nected systems that sustain life, we know that nothing can live without them. To call these things sacred is to say that they have a value beyond their usefulness for human ends, that they themselves become the standards by which our acts, our economics, our laws and our purposes must be judged. No-one has the right to appropriate them or profit from them at the expense of others. Any government which fails to protect them forfeits its legitimacy. For it is everyone's responsibility to sustain, heal and preserve the soil, the air, the fresh and salt wa- ters, and the energy resources that can support diverse and flourishing life. All people, all living things, are part of the earth- life, and so sacred. No one of us stands higher or lower than any other. Only justice can assure balance: only ecological balance can sustain freedom. Only in freedom can that fifth sacred thing we call spirit flourish in its full diversity. To honor the sacred is to create conditions in which nourishment, sustenance, habitat, knowl- edge, freedom and beauty can thrive. To honor the sacred is to make love possible. To this we dedicate our curiosity, our will, our courage, our silences and our voices. To this we 23 Secrets, Dialogues, Revelations: The Art of Betye and Alison Saar July 14 - September 16, 1990 Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago A highly unusual exhibition opens at the Museum of Contemporary Art on July 14, composed of 75 individual works and one collaborative site-specific installation by a mother and daughter pair — Betye and Alison Saar. Working on both coasts — Betye in California, Alison in New York City — they also call themselves "colleagues, sisters and friends." Explaining this complex relationship, Betye says, "When we are separated, we're mother and daughter, but when we come together, we're sisters." Art critics who have reviewed this show at UCLA have liked to focus on their similarities and differences. They cite Betye's refined and mystical evocations of Pacific Rim cultures, the lyrical, organic quality of her California setting and place in contrast Alison's "gritty urban edge," often shocking and demanding, influenced by her rough and tough NYC environment. The artists themselves cite their connections, their habits of sharing materials, the found objects they each prefer, and their mutual influences and interactions. In their collaborative work, "The House of Gris Gris," the theme of home as a nurturing nest and a place of spiritual renewal brings their visions into a coherent whole. In the film "Spirit Catcher", one of a series on "The Originals: Women in Art," Betye is asked by the interviewer, "How do you reconcile the two roles of mother and artist?" and Betye replies, laughing, "What's the difference?" Readers are urged to go and see this wonderful show, coming to us from the Wight Gallery, UCLA, and continuing on to Smith College in Northampton, the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, and the Oakland Museum in Oakland, California. Be sure to look for the extremely innovative and original catalog designed by Sheila Levrant de Bretteville. Prepare yourself to be moved by these secrets and shaken by these revelations, prepare to cross a boundary line between the worlds; plan to be quiet in these halls and spaces, to take a risk, to be open to the unexpected and the mystery of the unknown. To find something of beauty and value in what has been discarded, to discern traces of life and eerie power in much-used objects, to hear those echoes of love and loss , such is the gift that awaits you in the art of Betye and Alison Saar. Alison Saar and Betye Saar with the figure LAZARUS, 1988, wood, paint and rhinestoncs by Alison Saar. Photograph by Anthony Barbosa. 24 Secrets, Dialogues, Revelations: The Art of Betye and Alison Saar July 14 - September 16, 1990 Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago Dr. Damballa's ]u-Ju, 1989, free-standing assemblage, Betye Saar 25 SECTION II THE HUMAN-ANIMAL BOND AND THE QUESTION OF ANIMAL RIGHTS THE WONDER OF WHALES Marilyn Fischbach She lies perfectly still, twenty feet below the surface. The water is crystal clear, blue. The ocean is calm, the wind barely rippling the water. She is perfectly still. I float on the surface. She is directly below me, bigger and grayer than I ever imagined. Resting, motionless, the whiteness of her fins glows a metallic azure color. To see her is a feast for my eyes. I am still, except for my breathing. My breathing is involuntary, even with an unfamiliar snorkel, my breath just comes. I try to breathe quietly, I don't want to make any noise to break the spell of the moment. She lies perfectly still — not breathing at all. She lies perfectly still, twenty feet below me, a humpback whale, 40 tons, thirty or more feet long. She allows me to observe her universe. Silently her calf glides out from under her fin and moves toward me. I am in such awe that I did not even notice the calf. The calf comes toward me. Closer she comes, looking at me (or so I assume). For an instant I wonder if I should move. What if the calf doesn't know how fragile I am in the water? The instant passes, I look at the calf, the calf looks at me. Then she turns and swims down to her mother. She touches her mother with her fin. They both turn toward me and then down away from me, away to eventually surface to breathe. I stay still for a few more moments. I can hardly believe what just happened. My immediate re- sponse is to laugh. My laughter brings coughs and sputters — I'm still in the water with my snorkel. As I haul myself into the boat I say to myself, "I have seen whales in their environment. I was with them in the water." With a sense of sheer delight I add, "And, I was seen by two whales!" Considering that we live in a world so entirely different from the world in which whales dwell, and that most of us never see them at all, and considering that everything surround- ing their lives is shrouded in almost complete ignorance, it is a little hard to understand just where an interest in whales arises.. .all we need to know is that it does arise. Whales tend to 26 lodge in the hearts of people — sometimes they lodge crosswise where they stick for life. Roger Payne For reasons I don't understand, whales are caught in my heart, so much so that I journeyed 4,250 miles to volunteer my time for 14 days to work with the Pacific Whale Foundation in Maui, Hawaii. The PWF has an internship program for ordinary citizens who want to learn more about whales, assist in on-going research, and support efforts to learn more about whales and their ocean environment. The internship was a com- bination of work and fun. Everyone understood that our time in ~>~\ rf Hawaii was more than just a holiday. Our work, for even a short time, would be added to the work of other seasons. Part of our work was to go out early every morning in small boats to survey sections inside Maalea Bay and survey sections just outside the Bay. We were trying to determine the actual location of whale pods. When a pod was spotted, we attempted to get ID photos of in- dividual whales by getting photographs of the underside of the tail. The photos become part of an ever increasing catalogue of identified whales. These catalogues are used when whales are re- spotted in their summer feeding grounds or in other winter migration areas. In this way, whales can be followed and observed and studied with- out harm. Humpbacks are an endangered species. At one time there were thousands of humpback whales. The northern Pacific population now contains between 2,000 and 3,000 individuals. They were hunted to the point of near extinction. And, the jury is still out as to whether or not they will be able to re-establish themselves. There used to be millions of whales in all the world's oceans. From 1949 to 1962 more than a million and a half whales were killed. Killed and used to make soap and cosmetics and buttons and ribs for umbrellas and golf bags and nitro- glycerine for bombs. We did not need to kill whales to make these products, but we did. The factory ships went out year after year. If they could wound a calf, they would be sure to get the mother. Factory ships used sonar and air sur- veillance and exploding harpoon guns. In 30 minutes an entire whale could be reduced to nothing but its pieces. Nothing was wasted, except for the whale. In today's market a whale, a dead one, is worth from between $1 5,000 to $25,000. There are so few whales left that it is finally too expensive to hunt them. Whaling originated with coastal people who discovered that a whale could provide meat and materials for a whole village. The death of a whale was a gift to people. It took great skill and courage to go out onto the ocean and kill a whale and bring it back. It was hard to imagine killing more whales than could be used. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries whal- ing became a business. Whale oil provided the fuel for lights, lights in homes, on street corners, in factories. Whale oil was used because petro- leum had not yet been discovered. In the middle 1800s, some 70,000 men, in the United States alone, were employed in the whaling industry. The demand for oil was great and profits were high. Men had ships that could master the sea. They could hunt whales mid ocean and not just along the coast. It became possible to kill more and more whales. As we became more and more efficient killers, the whales did not become more efficient breeders. We killed without thought. Whales must be like fish, so plentiful that we could never kill them all. But we did. We killed them even when there was no longer a demand for their oil. We kill them now in the name of research with factory ships right behind to turn the research into pet food and fertilizer and cosmetics. Whales have lived in the oceans for 50 million years. We have actively hunted them for 400 years and have totally decimated their popula- tions in the last 70 years. We know lots of information about dead whales. We learned to estimate their age by examining the accumulated layers of wax in their ear canals. In female whales, every time they ovulate a scar is left on the ovary, so by counting the scars we estimated their age at death. We examined the rows of baleen, new rows are added up to the sixth year. By counting the rows we knew if they were six years or younger when they were killed. We know how big their hearts were. In a blue whale, the heart is four feet across and pumps 2,500 gallons of blood. The aorta is 18 inches in diameter. We have weighed and measured hundreds and thousands of dead whales. And while we did this, we barely took time to notice that whales rarely have any type of cancer in their bodies. Most other animals have evidence of pathological disease, but whales do not. It is only recently that we've begun to study live whales. Most of the killing has stopped. The great whales — the Blues, the Humpbacks, the Right, the Fin, the Sperm are so depleted that they may not be able to survive. With the great whales gone, nations like Japan, Iceland, Nor- way, Argentina are hunting the smaller whales, the Sei, Minke, and Beluga. And soon these too will be hunted to extinction. Now, when it may be too late, we come, people like me and hundreds more, come to the whales to try to learn about them. In our small boats we approach them carefully to take pictures to see if we will recognize them again — hopefully, years from now. Here's some of what we have learned about humpbacks: * The northern Pacific population spends the summer eating in arctic waters off Alaska. At the end of summer they migrate to islands south of Japan, Hawaii, the Farallon Islands and Baja to mate and calf. During these months they don't eat. * We don't know how they know how to get from the Arctic to Hawaii. * We do not have actual pictures of humpbacks giving birth or mating or nursing. * The humpbacks are the most surface-active of all whales, we can only guess why. It may be a form of communication. It may be part of the mating ritual. It may be for play. We have seen situations where it looks like a calf is being taught by the mother or a male escort to leap out of the water. Whales also slap their fins and their tails on the water. They bring their heads straight out of the water and spy-hop or lunge. * Their sense of hearing is their most acute sense. Their eyes can focus out of the water and in the water, but it seems that hearing is their most important sense. * Humpbacks sing. In the summer time, single males can be found suspended in the water singing a song that is repeated by other animals and is added to and changed each year. There are 27 massive low tones and high tone whistles. Off Maui, if you dive into the water and go down about three feet, you can hear the singing. If the whale happens to be close by, you can feel the song vibrate through your body. * As far as we can tell, there are no extended family groupings. A mother will stay with a calf for about a year. A calf will nurse for its first year, in the early months, gaining a hundred pounds a day. * We know that some calves and mothers do not like to be near boats and there are other calves and mothers and escorts that seem to be quite curious about people and boats. * There have never been any reports of hump- backs ramming boats or injuring people. On the contrary, there have been reports of whales assisting people who have fallen out of boats. * Proportionally, the whale brain is larger than the human brain. And it is thought that whales have the intelligence to communicate and learn beyond instinct. So, we come to learn about whales. We try to count them and observe them and even name them. We do this because we don't know how else to learn. Whales live under the water in a world we cannot see. The whales inhabit an environment that has no boundaries. They have no property. They do not build or save. American Indians believe that whales are the keepers and guardians of the world's wisdom. If this is so, then we have more to learn from the whales than we can learn about them. And perhaps in studying the whale, what we really learn about is ourselves. For me, a land/city person, just to be out on the ocean was an adventure. Knowing that whales were near brought a sense of wonder to the experience. We think that whales play a lot — maybe our research with them will help us learn to play — to bring a lightness, a sense of wonder to what we do. We have killed almost all the whales and are slowly killing the oceans with our pollution. And yet what I learned from the whales was a sense of joy, a celebration of the sheer exuberance of life. And a hope that there will be whales for future generations to learn from. NOTE: My experience with the whales was strictly supervised. In the water we were ac- companied by a marine biologist who was taking underwater photographs. In Maalea Bay, people and boats are not allowed within 300 yards of a whale. Elsewhere people and boats cannot approach closer than 100 yards. Only individuals or organizations with Federal Re- search permits are allowed closer approaches. The Federal and State laws apply to all people and water craft and are strictly enforced. Whales can, of course, approach boats or people whenever they choose! If you would like more information about humpback whales, contact the Pacific Whale Foundation: Pacific Whale Foundation Suite 25, Kealia Beach Plaza 101 N. Kihei Road Kihei, Maui, Hawaii 96753 Marilyn Fischbach is Manager of Training and Development, John Crane Inc. She was Guest Editor of our issue on Women in Management, Winter, 1989. / / 28 r; v FACTORY FARMING: NOT MR. MACDONALD'S FARM! Marcy Gross dose your eyes and imag- ine life on the farm grazing in a field of /*$ ■■ green grass, nuz- zling their calves. Chickens roaming about the barn- yard, squawking and scratching to their hearts' content. Nearby, some pigs yawn contentedly while others play in their pens, waiting for Farmer Joe to come and feed them. Sounds like a good, old-fashioned, MacDonald's farm. It's a good thing we can still picture it in our minds because the idyllic family farm is almost a thing of the past. It's rapidly being replaced by what's become known as an animal "factory," where animals are crammed together in small cages and never see the sun, taste the rain or feel the grass beneath their feet. The farm "family" now consists of automated feeding, water and ventilation systems, computerized closed-circuit TVs and vacuum pumps. Health comes not from exercise and fresh air but from antibiotics and hormones. "Factory farming" caught on shortly before World War II, when farmers began to specialize in the year-round production of chickens to meet increased demand. Newly-discovered Vitamins A and D replaced sunlight and exercise for bone development and proper growth. There were bigger buildings, bigger flocks and bigger profits. Large feed companies put researchers to work creating new strains of broader-breasted chicken and hybrid corn feed which would result in quicker weight gain. Many small farmers didn't have enough money for the new factory-type production. They went broke or were taken over by big-money food producers — "agribusiness." Today, 95 percent of chicken farming is in the hands of fewer than five companies. Pork and beef production has also become large-scaled and labor-intensive though not as much as chicken. The goal of modern farming is to maximize profit by increasing output at the lowest cost. Intense controversy has erupted over factory farming and the ethical concerns that go with it: close confinement, overcrowding or isolation of pigs, chicken and calves and the branding, de- horning and castration of cattle without anesthe- sia. At one end of the spectrum are animal welfarists who find the animals' conditions deplorable — especially the plight of the veal calf. Dr. Alex Hershaft of the Washington, D.C.-based Farm Animal Reform Movement paints this picture: Taken from his mother the day of birth, the calf is chained from the neck in a narrow, unbedded crate too small to turn around in. Kept in dark- ness to hold down excitement, he's fed a liquid diet of skim milk, growth stimulators and antibi- otics. This anemic diet results in the kind of pale- colored flesh gourmets find desirable. Those that survive the chronic diarrhea and respiratory disorders are slaughtered at 16 weeks of age. "If you keep a calf in a box, deny him solid food, fresh air and exercise, you're gonna have a very sick animal," says Brad Miller of the San Fran- cisco-based Humane Farming Association. He points to a recent study at Texas A & M which showed conclusively that stress levels increased when calves were confined. Virginia veterinarian Dr. Matt Graves, who's seen both the confine- ment and outdoor "free-range" systems, confirms the charges of animal welfare groups. 'Those cows can barely get up and are extremely suscep- tible to disease. Imagine being in a coffin and sucking liquid through a straw, that's what it's like." Chickens are probably the most intensively confined animals and their lives are nothing to crow about. Hens live in cages layered one on top of the other in long, barracks-type buildings which hold up to 250,000 hens. Five birds fit in a cage the size of a newspaper until they're slaugh- tered at about 18 months of age. The wire mesh floor cuts into their feet, causing inflamed joints and twisted legs. To prevent stress-induced fighting from overcrowding, their beaks are seared with a hot blade so they won't peck each other to death. Male chicks are suffocated or gassed at birth and artificial lights are kept on 14- 16 hours a day to stimulate egg production. When hens are no longer productive egg-layers, they're killed and made into soup and other processed foods. Broilers are kept in similar barracks but here about 90,000 birds take over the entire floor; 2 q they're killed for their meat at seven weeks old. In the time it takes to read this page, over 5,000 birds, mostly chickens, will be killed. Paul Mel- amo left a job in the confinement system to work on a free-range chicken farm, Nest Egg Farms of Taos, New Mexico. "Chickens don't usually engender compassion but after awhile it gets to you," he recalls. "The confinement was really terrible. They'd be in small, dark areas. Lots of cannibalism with caged birds. Here we have very little of that!" Pig production has also moved into the arena of factory farms. According to the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals, 90 percent of all pigs are closely confined at some point in their lives and 70 percent are constantly confined. Sows are kept pregnant or nursing constantly and are kept in metal stalls, unable to turn around. She's only allowed to eat, drink and keep teats exposed to piglets; hard pen floors result in painful foot lesions. Although pigs are naturally peaceful, social animals, they resort to cannibalism and tailbiting when packed into crowded pens and develop neurotic behaviors such as bar-biting and head-rocking when isolated and confined. To prevent cannibalism, piglets have their tails docked — without anesthesia. At the other end of the spectrum from the animal rights groups are farming industry representa- tives. They claim that animal activists wrongly attribute human emotions to animals. "Bar-biting and pacing may or may not be abnormal — it's a subjective interpretation," says Dr. David Meeker of the National Pork Producer's Council. "Ani- mal rights groups try to put themselves in an animals' position. We think that's inappropriate. Animals are well-fed, comfortable, warm and clean. . . that's basically all an animal wants. "A cow doesn't need to exercise," William Boardman of Dairy Farmers, Inc. claims. "She uses up a tremendous amount of energy just to make milk." Researcher Dr. Joy Mench, Department of Poultry Science, University of Maryland, says, "We need more scientific research to determine whether animals feel boredom, frustration, pleasure or apprehension of future suffering. I don't feel it's been proven one way or the other." Somewhere in the middle of the activists and industry representatives is Howard Lyman, legislative analyst for the National Farmer's Union, which represents the 540,000 family farms still left. "I wouldn't attach all human feelings to animals but I know they respond to a negative or positive environment — I've been kicked by more than a few cattle who were afraid." "Animal activists have to understand why ani- mals are treated the way they are," Lyman states. "A sow's farrowing crate, for example, prevents her from instinctually eating her piglets at birth or accidentally crushing them. Piglet mortality has decreased greatly since the farrowing crate." Referring to the veal crate Lyman states, "The veal calf never gets his mother's milk so he's extremely susceptible to disease. A veal operator has to crate his animals to cut down on disease; that way the calf can't turn around and get at the bacteria in his stool. After three weeks the calf s built up some resistance; then you should get them out and exercise them." "A successful food producer must take good care of his animals — a veal operator should keep the mortality rate below 10 percent," Lyman contin- ues. "Violate the rules of good management and you'll go broke." At the root of factory farming is simple econom- ics. Free-range farming requires more labor to watch over and care for animals; keeping them confined results in simpler management with fewer staff needed. They have to squeeze maxi- mum productivity out of minimum space. "If we had to allow a calf more space," Barb Huffman, President of the Wisconsin Veal Association notes, "it measures into our profitability and we'd be out of business. If we changed our methods we wouldn't exist." Some of the family farmers are locked into contractual arrangements with the huge agribusi- ness corporations. Free-range veal farmer Rachel Nicholl puts it this way: "A confinement farmer buys the milk-replacement formula from the same company that ends up buying the animals from the farmer. The formula pro- duces the pale, anemic color. If the meat doesn't satisfy their demand for pale color, they'll post- pone the sale which is a tremendous burden, eco- nomically." Same with the average chicken farmer. 30 "He's a slave to the packing industry," says Lyman. "Agribusiness has the small farmer in economic bondage; he's forced to buy their feed and sell to their plant." What does the future hold for farm animal production? It isn't clear, but reforms seem inevitable. A recent Massachusetts bill to improve the health of farm animals and promote the use of humane practices in animal husbandry was voted down. Lyman isn't surprised: "A farmer in one state competes with farmers in other states. If they're legislated to do certain things out-of-state farmers don't have to do, they'll be eliminated competitively. You'd have to make legislation international to be effective." And slowly, advancements are being made on the international scene. Last July, Sweden en- acted a Farm Animal Bill of Rights, freeing cattle, pigs and chickens from the restrictions of inten- sive, factory-farming methods. Most of the re- quirements will be phased in over the next few years, to lift some of the economic burden from farmers and give them time to build more spa- cious accommodations. Veal producers such as Quantock in Great Britain have done away with the veal crate in favor of the straw-yard system, where there's natural lighting and straw bedding. There's better health, and therefore fewer drugs are added to the feed. The meat is less tender says the Food Animals Concerns Trust, a Chicago-based animal welfare group. But it's richer in taste and texture, lower in fat and contains no potentially harmful drug residues. The Netherlands and Switzerland are phasing out the cage system and Great Britain has banned it. Sweden and Switzerland have outlawed the use of tethers for the restraint of breeding sows. One thing is certain. Improvements and research are needed. But before that can happen, both sides need to talk. As Dr. Stan Curtis, Professor of Animal Science at the University of Illinois maintains, 'There is no other nation in the west- ern world where there is less fruitful exchange of ideas and information between the humane movement and production agriculture than right here in the U.S." ARE FACTORY FARM ANIMALS GOOD TO EAT? Aside from the inhumanity of the conditions under which factory farm animals are raised, the hottest controversy is over the quality of food they produce. Half of all antibiotics manufac- tured in the U.S. are given to farm animals on a daily basis to combat stress- induced disease. Howard Lyman, life-long cattle farmer and legislative analyst for the National Farmer's Union feels: "If you crowd animals together without antibiotics there's gonna be lots of disease — there's absolutely no doubt in my mind about that." In addition to antibiotics the vast majority of animals are routinely fed hormones to stimulate growth and production. In fact, up until 1979, DES — known to cause birth defects in hu- mans — was used in cattle feed! Although the official position of the National Cattlemen's Association is that DES is no longer used, Dr. Stan Curtis of the University of Illinois adds: "There are probably still ways of getting DES. It wouldn't surprise me if some people are using it." The U.S.'s use of antibiotics and hormones hasn't endeared us to our European neighbors. Effective January 1, 1989, the European Community banned U.S. imports of meat from animals that were fed artificial growth-inducing hormones, even if the meat itself is free of any traces of hormones. But not everyone finds the use of antibiotics objectionable. Dr. Edwin Foster, former Director of the Food Research Institute at the University of Wisconsin says, "There's no known effect on human health from antibiotics used as feed ingredients. It might be harmful for antibiotics to be used to treat disease, such as mastitis in milking cows, if that milk is later consumed by one who is allergic to the drug. But I presume antibiotics would be metabolized through the intestinal tract and not get into human food. There is no evidence it stays in the muscle. The biggest problem with antibiotics is the issue of bacteria resistance — antibiotics used in animal feed may result in a meateater becoming immune to them which would jeopardize his ability to be treated for disease." To be safe, more and more people are purchasing only free-range animal products: veal, chicken, beef and "nest" eggs that have "no antibiotics or hormones" written on the package/carton. If your supermarket doesn't carry them, ask them to; in rural areas, contact your county extension agent. Marcy Gross is an editor at Woman's World Magazine. She lives in New Jersey. Her main interest is the issue of animal rights. 31 SECTION III THE MOVEABLE FEAST GAIASPEAK Bethe Hagens I was extremely impressed by a recent article in Time magazine that stated researchers were about to prove that no one reads books... apart from "compelling" books (e.g. Stephen King and the Harlequins), that is. People seem to be buying books and hoping that their contents will some- how come through by osmosis. I have always believed that there was a level of truth in this idea. I look long and lovingly at book covers, but the sheer number of words in most books overwhelms me. I don't read quickly and have the habit of memorizing what I do get through. The past year has brought an enormous change, however. It began with a domestic decision to give up control of our house (rooms set aside for specific purposes such as eating, bathing, sleep- ing; dining room table cleared off; books shelved, at right angles to those shelves...) and let it turn into a library. There are books everywhere. EVERYWHERE. And now that the "library feeling" is starting to be an integral and even jealously guarded part of our daily life, I have become obsessed with dictionaries. All kinds. French, German, Hopi, Sanskrit, Greek, Japanese, Proto-Indo-European, Gaelic... English! My husband Bill Becker and I began to acquire books (and dictionaries) in earnest in 1983 as we prepared for a presentation of our research at one of the first conferences on the Gaia hypothesis. (Bill is a design mathematician who worked with Buckminster Fuller and has taught at Chicago's Adler Planetarium.) We have been working with a variety of geometric models of the earth — and have come to believe that the mathematics and geometry of ancient cultures is directly applicable to contemporary modeling in cellular biology and astrophysics. (I have written about this for Creative Woman and won't repeat myself here.) We have been greatly inspired by the linguistic connection that binds the "ge" in geometry, geology, generate, gene, Genesis... to Ge (Gaia) — the Greek word for earth and the goddess of the earth. In our research with primal geometric forms known as the Platonic solids (Fig. 1), we found that one of them — the icosahedron — perfectly described the common virus (Fig. 2, #1). This 32 Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 The Egyptian MR Triangle Figure 4 / _jH 1440 ^V2592 MUes The Egyptian "MR" Tr of the Planetary Grid iangle in the Geon 2160 Miles ietry seemed absolutely unbelievable, especially since the icosahedron was exactly the model that we were using to talk about a kind of skeletal struc- ture for the "living energy" of Gaia (Fig. 2, #2). I went immediately to the encyclopedia (another treasure I have discovered in recent years), curious to learn what I could about viruses. Ultimately, I wondered where the word "virus" came from and ended up in the Oxford English Dictionary. "Virus" is a relatively new word, and its vi represents a change over time from the original Latin root ui. The history of ui (as in uiolare, "to force," "to do violence to") and its derivative vi (as in vivere, "to be alive," "to live") was so filled with contradiction that I wondered if I had made some ghastly etymological mistake. Apparently ui (and therefore vi) stems from the Sanskrit vrt. This latter root, vrt, is nothing less than a danger sign in Sanskrit. It is a powerful predicative meaning "to be" in the sense of "a vibrational happening, a shimmering, unevolu- tive eventfulness." Imagine a language universe in which nouns and verbs do not exist, in which living being "is" rather than "does." (I think the deconstructivist psychologists are trying to do just this.) The ancient speakers of Sanskrit seem to have prized such a state of utterances. Their sages warned of the need to "restrain the "vrtti," to curb the use of predicatives that "language" a reality in which subject and object are separate things acted with and upon. Latin and other modern Indo-European lan- guages more or less locked their speakers into philosophical dead-ends Eastern cultures may have traditionally avoided. Vrtti have becme the touchstones of our speech and our morality. Our cultures have languaged a non-living verbal/ physical universe in which an object (or being) and the qualities it manifests are (even must be) increasingly differentiated. I have come to think of this as the "Substance Fallacy." We have come to believe that our life — our "ac- tion" — is separate from us. In geometer-designer Buckminster Fuller's words, we "long ago misas- sumed that the organism employed by life is the life itself instead of merely the vehicle — as if the telephone was the communication itself instead of merely the instrument." The implications of this cultural linguistic choice are as overwhelming as the number of words we have generated to try to rectify what may have been a grave mistake (or non-adaptive evolution- ary branch) in our history. One needs only to survey words derived from vi to get the picture. They preserve, in agonizing clarity if one chooses to look, the enigmas and paradoxes embraced in modern society: vir and virgo ("man" and "maiden"); viron and virga ("sphere" and "rod"); virent and virus ("to become green and flourish" and "slime, poison"); and virtue ("a power distinct from matter" and "efficacy arising from a quality of physical or moral nature"). This linguistic heritage, with all its contradic- tions, is epitomized in the contemporary struggle of scientists and public health officials to describe and legislate the life that characterizes the "thing" we call the virus. What medicine has scientifically described as the "life" of the virus is almost a linguistic inventory of the vrt deriva- tives. The virus has the power of self-assembly and replication, but it does not sexually repro- duce. Its forms are either spherical/icosahedral or rod-shaped/heliacal. It either coexists in a healthy living cell or it attacks and destroys its host. It exists as both a "hollow shell" of crystal- lized protein or as an ordered complex of viral nucleic acid with a structural protein shell. The detour into defining its life by characteristics of its "substance" leads only to paradox and mean- ingless questions such as "Is a virus animal or mineral?" Alfred North Whitehead, certainly an under- recognized Gaia theorist, would have laughed at the question. "Biology is the study of the larger organism," he once said, "whereas physics is the study of the smaller organisms." We can't think in these terms, however, thanks to our linguistic heritage. We depend upon black and white, fact and myth, good and bad, actor and action. Just as we seek ways to eradicate the virus, we try to "repair" Gaia/Earth with technical solutions premised on mechanical "as if it were alive" models of a living organism This is wholly predictable, especially since no clear linguistic distinction can be made between "environment" and "virus." Their roots are identical. I don't think we are ready, culturally, to face what this really means. "Something" initiates action in the "being" we have languaged into "things" we call either "virus" or "Earth." This is, for me, a pro- foundly private matter — and one I prefer to leave unlanguaged. Much contemporary research on this matter is heartening, however, and has begun to invalidate the classical picture of the virus as an "alien" bent on its own replication and destruction of its host cell. (Would that the same could be said for the human species!) Sir Fred Hoyle has described "virus" as a pri- mary mechanism in evolution. If the "human" life process ends, he argues, the viral process ends also. They are not truly distinguishable. Therefore, if the viral action "succeeds," it does 33 so by not killing its host. When genetic modifica- tion occurs as a result of viral encounter, evolu- tion has taken place. (I like this theory very much.) Nevertheless, a paradox exists. The natural response of host cells to "foreign particles" (including the substances we refer to as viruses) is to ingest and dispose of them. This dual nature of physiological response is, of course, reflected in our language. The word "host" is derived from both "victim" (hostia) and "war-like expedi- tion" (hostem) — as well as from "guest" and "host" (both hospes). The fate of "the host cell" and "the virus" (beware the vrtti!) is interdepen- dency. Creative opposition. Yin and yang. What I have discovered is that there are a very, very few "root" words and meanings. Like vi, they are almost all dichotomous, and they both transcend and link the various human tongues. I have begun to imagine a wonderfully simple, profoundly expressive ancient language that might have consisted of less than one hundred words. I call it GaiaSpeak, It would have avoided the traps of nouns and verbs, tenses, subject and objects. It would have epitomized the mystery of life in overtly recognized paradoxes of speech. My most recent insight into GaiaSpeak came from a bumper sticker I found myself staring at as I waited for a train to pass. It was beautifully printed in Celtic-type letters that spelled out An Gaelica. I felt the old pounding heart that gener- ally accompanies a prolonged spell of dictionary- mania as it dawned on me that I might be look- ing at another linguistic manifestation of Gaia, this time via "my own" people — the Irish. I wondered if it could possibly be that the Gaelic an gael had preserved a connection between geometric angles and angels? Gaia might, then, be the living being now languaged as these "things." There is solid evidence that this is at least part of the picture. Irish Gaelic, from what little I remember from my Grandmother, is a fairy language — intimately poetic, tender, and alive. It seems to have heeded the warning against overuse of the vrtti in inter- esting ways. In Early Irish, I've found that an gael would translate as "the essence of love." Hence, "angelic" (I believe). The leap to "angle" is more circuitous. Substan- tial connections between ancient Gaelic and Egyptian cultures have now been well-docu- mented within academia. Even the measuring systems of the two cultures were virtually identi- cal. It seems, therefore, impossible to ignore the fact that the most sacred triangle in ancient Egyptian mathematics is known as MR or "love" (Fig. 3). Hence, I believe, "angle." (This same 34 triangle is also the geometric "heart" of the icosahedron that describes both the earth model we have developed as well as the protein shell of the virus.) I regularly check speculations such as these with others who love word histories. Most of us have reached the conclusion that what has happened, in theory, to language — and what actually happened — are bound to be very different stories. For instance, my Proto-Indo-European dictionary states the "angle" reaches us via the root ank — which means "to bend" or "to turn." Following the lead taken by Martin Bernal in his astonishing text Black Athena, I also invoke the Egyptian root for "life" (ankh). Life. Bending and turning. I wonder endlessly if, as the Koran and other ancient Chinese and Hindu texts seem to indicate, there was early knowledge of the DNA spiral in human history. The same dictionary is adamant that "Gaia" is a Greek noun of unknown origin. I don't think so. The Early Irish had a dichotomous language, and it is more than curious that their word gainntir has survived. It means "jail." If I trace from the other direction, i.e. back in time from our word "jail," I find that it's derived from the Indo- European root keu. The bountiful keu also yields "to bend or turn," "a round, hollow object," "a vessel," "to lie down on," "to burn," "brightly shining," "swollen, strong and powerful." I think this is Gaia. If we, as a species, are going to survive in sanity, we may have to also realize that Gaia is both goddess and "jail" — and us. We language our- selves into a being hell or heaven. ("Hell," pre- dictably, the wonderful warm dark underworld, also gets to us linguistically via the goddess through the Proto- Indo-European root kel.) Reconstructuring the essentials of the even more remote "proto-language" I call GaiaSpeak may well be my life's work. I know that the task is as compelling as it is inextricably bound to my search for a spiritual, yet inherently practical internal Gaia consciousness. I'll Stop here. As a writer, I can no longer ignore the number of trees I am potentially sentencing. Bcthe Hagens, Ph.D., Professor of Anthropology and Geography, Governors State University, Core Faculty, Union Institute Graduate School. POETRY Margaret S. B. White C OC LVPSO TO COUSTEAU ON THE LOSS OF HIS SON TO WATER Jacques Cousteau, what do you think of the ocean now? Your salty world, the Calypso fluidly dancing over it toward the coordinates you meticulously plotted; those charts you kept rolled inside long cardboard cylinders, the kind gift paper comes on, and each opening of the cylinder, each unfurling of the chart was for you like unwrapping a Christmas present The joy as you squinted toward those places you would find buried treasure — Atlantis or a sunken Roman galleon; the excitement as you pondered sharks and built underwater cages to protect your divers as they photographed them, and photographers to photograph the photographers, images of triple rows of razor teeth flashing through the murk, gnawing bars; the bars breaking, the divers shrinking back to the far corners desperately jerking the haul-up lines And on deck the lean-bodied, barechested brown men, their hands clenched fists holding rope, their salt sweat and the sea salt mixed to leave a white crust on the skin; the photographic eye records as the biceps strain, the forearms flex and bend, the lats grow huge with blood and the weight of the cage; they pull it up through brown, through blue-green, through blue against the enormous resistance of water and still the shark batters the cage, the dull snout comes closer to the diver with every thrust of that dumb, massive head Until the diver holds his camera like a shield between himself and those joyful slicing teeth, holds the camera with one hand while the other tries to keep his oxygen line open, tries to keep the shark from tangling the haul-up; then after what seems like watching a death in slow motion, the cage breaks the surface of the water like an undiscovered geyser, lines go slack, the men on deck fall back, the cage dangles in space, free of water at last but not yet of the shark; it makes one final try, leaps into the clear, bright foreign air then itself falls back, a part of the ocean again. CDUSTEAU 50CIETY 35 Poetry by Margaret S. B. White II On deck the cage is surrounded by members of your crew: some help the diver out; he staggers into their arms collapsing from the weight of the tanks, the weight of his fear and the cameras roll, record it all: you consoling, Cousteau, the crew removing the tanks and the absurd rubber suit. Jean-Michel, your oldest son, examines the cage for broken welds; Philippe, the younger, stands aside looks at the sea for some clue, then turns to the camera, to us, to explain. In the background, celebration and the opening of beer and we, who see this film on National Geographic, knew it would have to end this way. Ill Now, Cousteau, your son is under ice the super-insulation of the suit protects him from the cold. He floats: his body moves with sluggish undulation through breaks in icebergs; the mute gazes of crystalline fish follow him through the hollows of caves holding frozen stalactites. He swims through them; each move, each turn, a place he's never been, nobody's ever seen; he is first. The divers with cameras are next; their underwater floodlights illuminate the ice, cast tentative shadows of each other against the iceberg's submerged surface; they record his discoveries, Cousteau. they see as he sees — they see him see — the polar bear, the humpback whale: they capture his delight in the radiant ice, the pale irridescence of it. And when you watch your son, Cousteau, when you see him in your element through the projector's filament do you wonder at his ease, his shy grace; when he turns, do you strain your eyes to see his face? IV Now, he changes elements, Cousteau; he pilots a seaplane toward Portugal. No cameramen follow him this time, although he is not alone: seven others share the cabin of the plane. It seems, suspended in space, caught between ocean and sky, like a bad compromise, this machine; suited neither to water nor air. Its pontoons hang like oxygen tanks, like bombs; they drag the plane toward land — and the plane flies heavy above it and almost gives up to gravity. Your son takes it seriously, Cousteau: like you, he eyes his maps; he flies through clouds unrecorded as icebergs, through lensless atoms of sky; there is no film trace of the journey he makes through this place: it is not for posterity. He flies toward the Tagus River, the brown land below turning green; in the distance, the Mediterranean and the city of Alverca. He makes his approach unbothered as the surface of the river; he has done this before: this voyage no harder than all the others; air or water to him did not matter, Cousteau, although it did to you. 36 Poetry by Margaret S. B. White ON THE CUTTING OF SOME TREES For Barbara We walk the forest floor and fragrant sawdust, resin oozing thickly from within, sticks to the faded suede of our boots like a new kind of skin. Above, skylarks fly in puzzled arcs and seek the branches where they once made their nests and came to rest before the sunset turned to dark. In this new meadowland we see the jagged stumps of chain- sawed oaks and watch as motes of dust float upward to an air once green with hickory leaves, and hear a brittle caw of mourning from one lost crow. We feel the forest cry and then we turn and wade across the almost silent creek to go. 37 A REPORT FROM THE CONSERVATION CHAIR Catharine Blair This is your conservation chair speaking. I have been doing some on the spot investigation of environmental problems, beginning with two weeks in Tuscon, Arizona where I found the residents squandering water like it was going out of style - grassy lawns kept green with under- ground watering systems and kidney-shaped pools on the back patios. There are no restrictions whatsoever on watering. It only rains every two months there! On the Edisto River in South Carolina a dozen of us canoed six days from Orangeburg to Collision State Park, finding a timber company cutting right up to the banks of the river. This river has no public land other than the State Parks and some poorly maintained county facilities which had trash all over and no privies at all. The trip was led by the Sierra Club's Wetlands Task Force and the State's Water Resource Department. A coalition of groups are working to have the Edisto declared a state Wild and Scenic River and to urge the state to purchase more riverfront campsites. This is a classic blackwater stream lined with tupelo, bald cypress, and black gum trees which are full of warblers, barred owls, pileated wood peckers, and Carolina wrens. June; a paradise of breeding birds, grassland, and woodland flowers. Lewis and Clark explored it and Charley Russell painted their story. I didn't find a thing wrong with the Great Falls environs. It was absolutely beautiful! Next was the Sierra Club's four-day International Conference in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Highlights were David Brower, Time magazine's Charles Alexander, Dave Foreman, and former U.S. Representative John Sieberling. Members from as far as Malaysia and the Inuits of Alaska joined national Club officials from San Francisco. In August I did six days of lake paddling in the clear waters of the Lady Evelyn/Temagmami region of Ontario. The loons called to us at night and by day the chipmunks were very demanding of our munchies of nuts and seeds. The scenery was magnificent, the portages boulder-strewn. This trip was led by Ralph Freese. Half of the fun was visiting the voyageur sites along the way, especially St. Marie among the Hurons and the Wye Marsh Wildlife Center in Midland. We just happened to be there when the 300th anniversary of the Jesuit appearance in Canada was being celebrated with the landing of several voyageur canoes amid redcoat gun salutes and bagpipes. They had started their paddle in Quebec City in June. I recommend this whole territory as an alterna- tive to the Boundary Waters. It has the same Canadian Shield, same moose and loons, same good swimming waters, and excellent parks and campgrounds, all with a historical touch, I might add. Catharine Blair is an environmentalist and canoeist who monitors the U.S. Park systems for the Sierra club. / •• In Montana on the Missouri River I found hun- dreds of birds in two wildlife refuges and nature conservancy sites. This is magnificent territory in 38 rt V GREEN HOLDS NO RESPONSE Sarah Probst The clover grew tall by the roadside. This was all I thought about as we drove. In- formation signs snapped past the car. They told me nothing. He had decided to drive. His chlorine-blond hair was tied back out of his way now and his olive eyes were protected from the sun with dark glasses. He spoke to me about the greenhouse effect for almost an hour before sleep took over. I dreamt about killer radioactive vegetables and woke up feeling calm. He talked to me for a while about the miracle of trees and life and peace. He offered me a mint. I wasn't sure. / 39 Two Book Reviews of The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution By Carolyn Merchant Harper and Row, 1990 Reviewed by Lynn Lindvig For those of us with an innate distrust of the institution of science, this book will confirm our darkest suspicions. Even for those with a healthy dose of respect for science technology and prog- ress, this book will leave us with doubts about the foundation our technological society rests upon. It is a meticulously researched account of the paradigm shift that occurred during the period we now call the scientific revolution in Western thought during the sixteenth and seven- teenth centuries. This massive ideological shift from an earth-centered organic view of the world to one in which the earth becomes dead matter spinning around the sun in a mechanistic uni- verse did not occur overnight, nor did it occur without a struggle. The struggle, and those involved in it, are beautifully brought to life by Carolyn Merchant, a professor of environmental history, philosophy and ethics at Berkeley, in a book that will take a preeminent place in the field. Before and during the Renaissance, life perme- ated virtually every object from stones to hu- mans. This animistic view was ancient wisdom unchallenged by science since there was no body of scientific knowledge which could be used to differentiate animate from inanimate forms. The philosophies of Plato and Aristotle were redis- covered and widely followed at this time. Plato saw the earth as having a female soul and as the source of all motion in the universe. He refers to the earth as a "nurse" and this image is repeated by later animists. Aristotle also saw the earth as being female, although in matter only. The spiritual and intellectual aspects of life were assigned to the male principle. (This is where we have the beginnings of the acceptance of nature and the female sex as passive in Western thought.) Having a mother earth placed restraints on the amount of digging, grazing, chopping and pollut- ing a society could impose. This was the case with "primitive" cultures like the American Indians and held powerful sway until the ideo- logical shift of the seventeenth century. A pri- mary example of this attitude is given by Mer- chant in her accounts of the opposition to min- 40 ing. Throughout history, mining had been seen as a particular abomination against the nurturing earth. Even to the Roman writers Pliny, Ovid and Seneca, mining was seen as a violation of the mother's womb and a display of man's greed. Pliny believed that whatever was hidden beneath the earth was concealed by the mother in her infinite wisdom: "For it is upon her surface, in fact, that she has presented us with these substances, equally with the cereals, bounteous and ever-ready, as she is, in supplying us with all things for our benefit! It is what is concealed from our view, what is sunk beneath her surface, objects, in fact, of no rapid formation, that urge us to our ruin, that send us to the very depths of hell.... when will be the end of thus exhausting the earth, and to what point will avarice finally penetrate!" (p. 30) By the Renaissance, much forest had been de- stroyed to make way for mines and to smelt iron ore. Water pollution was also noted as a by- product of mining. In the early 1400s Florence passed laws to prohibit the dumping of lime into the rivers because it was poisoning the fish. Mining even came to be associated with human lust, and digging into the earth was compared to probing the secret places of a woman. Merchant uses vivid examples from various historical vantage points to demonstrate the opposition to man's quest for precious metals. The passages she has found and brought together illuminate poignantly the struggle between preserving nature and the onslaught of the market economy in which nature becomes a commodity. Although she gives examples such as Pliny from Roman times, and does point out that this struggle has been going on since prehistory, the seventeenth century is the crucial turning point which she discusses at length in the book and where we find the basis of our technological society. By the seventeenth century, the pressure of a rapidly expanding commercial market going up against the organic world view was creating tension at all levels of society, and was part of the greater sense of chaos as the reformation spread and religious sects appeared, such as the Quakers, Huguenots, Anabaptists, and Lollards. A common practice among them was a wider role for women in religion. This threatened the status quo; an old, ordered world was dying in more ways than one. Land use shifted from agrarian subsistence "commons" to profit-ori- ented ventures owned by a single individual or family. Peasants who had enjoyed use of commu- nal land became displaced wage workers. Says Merchant, "the fundamental social and intellec- tual problem of the seventeenth century was one of order." The basic tenet of Merchant's book is that the theories of the scientific revolution are based upon an insatiable need to impose order upon an unruly, threatening time of change. Power was naturally a main concern as well. Since the Catholic church was no longer the ultimate authority, power became secularized. In order to bring back political and social stability, it was wielded over the elements which caused disorder; society being so hierarchical, power came from the top down in a patriarchal model where women and nature were seen as lower forms at the bottom of the ladder. The Judeo- Christian ethic of male dominance, along with the concept of dominion over nature also found in the Bible, spread to the secular world and condoned the exploitation of nature for the benefit of man in the rising market economy. The radical sects with egalitarian views toward the sexes or a Utopian ideology toward nature were derided or persecuted; it is during this time that the witch trials occurred. Since women were associated with lower intellectual forms and the female allied with mother nature, they were to blame for the dark, passionate and chaotic side of the world. Any woman viewed as powerful was a renewed threat to the existing patriarchy. Our scientifically constructed view of the world around us, except for recent developments in quantum physics, originates with the "fathers" of science: Thomas Hobbes, Rene Descartes, Sir Francis Bacon, and slightly later, Sir Isaac New- ton and Gottfried Wilhelm Von Leibniz. Yet they were a part of this social milieu. Merchant takes a fresh look at them, with a critical eye cast toward Bacon especially, who was upwardly mobile in the King's service during the reign of James I of England, the notorious witch hunter, and who apparently appropriated his model of scientific inquiry from the witch trials: "For you have but to follow and as it were hound nature in her wanderings and you will be able when you like to lead and drive her af- terward to the same place again. Neither am I of opinion in this history of marvels that super- stitious narratives of sorceries, witchcrafts, charms, dreams, divinations, and the like, where there is an assurance and clear evidence of the fact, should be altogether excluded... howsoever, the use and practice of such arts is to be condemned, yet from the speculation and consideration of them... a useful light may be gained, not only for a true judgment of the offenses of persons charged with such practices, but likewise for the further disclosing of the secrets of nature. Neither ought a man to make scruple of entering and penetrating into these holes and corners, when the inquisition of truth is his whole object — as your majesty has shown in your own example." (p. 168) Bacon is generally credited with the separation of science from theology. Until his influence, physi- cal sciences were taught by theologians at the English and European universities and God was "immanent" in nature. Bacon took God away from science, not by denying his existence which would have been heresy, but by stating that God existed outside of matter, which was passive and acted upon by external force. Matter, thus nature, could be acted upon in any fashion. Bacon spe- cifically calls for open "dissection" and examina- tion of nature whose secrets will benefit man- kind. For Descartes, matter was inert, "dead" and "stupid" and could be broken down into par- ticles which acted independently of each other, moved by external force since they had no life in and of themselves. The dominant metaphor of these workings was the machine. The human body was made to fit that metaphor of independ- ent particles functioning regularly and following mathematical laws. Descartes even viewed animals as "beast machines," insensate. Mathe- matics became the key to the universe and every- thing could be reduced to mathematics and understood rationally, without the unpredictabil- ity of animism which imparted life to even the smallest bodies of matter. Thomas Hobbes ex- tended the machine metaphor to the body politic in his Leviathan, in which human law and order made sense out of the state of chaos that was inherently found in nature. Merchant explains the pervasiveness of the machine metaphor, indeed even in our own time, as being due to the fact that machines, like windmills, fulling mills, pulleys, and clocks, were becoming a large part of the daily life of Europe- ans; working the land, hence contact with and dependence on nature, was less a part. As the mechanistic view took hold there was opposition to the spirit of life being removed from living things. In the generation following Descartes et al., one arm of resistance came from the Platonists at Cambridge University. Their philosophy represents a compromise between 41 organicism and mechanism, according to Mer- chant, and with them lie the roots of modern ecology. Henry More and Ralph Cudworth held a "mana- gerial" view of nature. Conservation of natural resources was necessary for the sake of human progress, i.e. timber was needed for ships, so depleting the forest made no sense. They be- lieved the earth to be alive but of a "vegetative" nature which put them at odds with Descartes but did not put them in the same camp with the animists. Nature was alive, but did not have a will, therefore man still had dominion over nature but the responsibility of stewardship to a living earth. This ideology surfaces in twentieth century ecology. Not to be overlooked are the Quaker vitalists Anne Conway and Francis Mercury Van Helmont, who vehemently rejected Descartes' separation of matter and spirit and indeed agreed with the animists of centuries past that all matter was infused with life. Conway wrote, "How can it be, that any dead thing should proceed from him, or be created by him, such as is mere body or matter.. .It is truly said of one that God made not death, and it is true that he made no dead thing: For how can a dead thing depend on him who is life and charity?" Although it would appear that the mechanists won the struggle, views like this were not utterly stamped out and Conway herself corresponded with and influ- enced the theories of the philosopher/mathemati- cian Gottfried Wilhelm Von Leibniz, who also opposed the inertness of matter. The Death of Nature was originally published in 1980. This edition contains a preface written in 1989 in which the author recounts the explosion of the grass roots environmental movement of the 1980s, a renewed interest in the cult of the goddess and pagan, earth-oriented rituals, and the spreading of the GAIA theory proposed by atmospheric chemist James Lovelock in the late 1970s. All of this would indicate a growing movement whose diverse parts show signs of becoming galvanized against further abuse of the earth. The scientific revolution broke down the earth, the human body, and the body politic into mechanized parts functioning without unity or a sense of interdependence. It is quite probable that we are seeing this process in reverse. Holism has crept into mainstream medicine, the social sci- ences, and most importantly, environmental science with the GAIA theory. I urge anyone with an interest in the future of the planet to read this book, in order to better under- 42 stand the basis of our current ecological crisis and to grasp just how far back into history its roots go. What we do with this knowledge of the imperfections of our modern science and "prog- ress" remains to be seen. It will be a future chapter in Carolyn Merchant's story, one in which, as she says, "the world must again be turned upside down." Lynn Ann Lindvig, a graduate of the College of Communications at University of Illinois Champaign- Urbana, currently works for a medical journal. She is a member of Chicago Women in Publishing and is an editorial consultant for The Creative Woman. J A Journal Hypatia / r:i; OYPATIA, a journal founded hy members of the Society for Women in Philosophy as a forum for dialogue within the women's movement, is dedicated to the publication of scholarly research in feminist philosophy and the only journal in the country for scholarly research at the intersection of philosophy and women's studies. 1 Hypatia SPECIAL ISSUE ' ,1 . Triannual. Subscriptions: $25 individuals (one year), $48. 0C individuals (two years), $40 institutions. Outside US, add SIC per year for foreign surface postage. Send orders to Indiana University Press, Journals Division, 10th & Morton Streets Bloomington, IN 47405. Or call 812-855-9449. Second Book Review on The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution Reviewed By Margaret S. Matchett Metaphors are shaped by experience; they also form the basis and justification for action. A metaphor can provide the framework not only for the interpretation of observation but also for a system of ethics. In The Death of Nature, Carolyn Merchant juxtaposes two metaphors for nature, both with ancient historical roots. On the one hand, nature has been viewed as a living organ- ism. This organic view can imply a deep respect for nature and can entail constraints on activi- ties — mining, deforestation, and the like — which are seen as abuses of the earth. In contrast, nature can be seen as an aggregate of lifeless particle s — atoms, electrons, quarks — subject to mechanistic and discoverable laws. The Death of Nature focuses on the period from 1500 to 1700, during which the dominant meta- phor shifted from organic to mechanical. Inter- connected intellectual, scientific, technological, economic, and political currents brought about this shift. To the formidable task of describing these currents, Merchant brings a wealth of scholarship. The book presents fascinating mate- rial, rewarding particularly for its insights into the historical roots of the present ecological crisis. As the book's subtitle — Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution — suggests, the author is also concerned with the implications of world view for the status of women. Here, too, she presents interesting historical data, but this reader found the attempt at synthesis not entirely persuasive, for a reason that arises from a more general flaw in the analysis. Merchant asserts 1 : Central to the organic theory was the identification of nature, especially the earth, with a nurturing mother: a kindly, be- neficent female who provided for the needs of mankind in an ordered universe. But another opposing image of nature as female was also prevalent: wild and uncontrollable nature that could render violence, storm, droughts, and general chaos. Both were identified with the female sex and were projections of human perceptions onto the external world. The sec- ond image, nature as disorder, called forth an important modern idea, that of power over nature. Two new ideas, those of mechanism and of the domination and mastery of nature, became core concepts of the modern world. Here, as elsewhere, the author equates mecha- nism with domination — domination of the natural world and, by extension, of people — women in particular. It is true that the Scientific Revolution and the technology associated with it gave rise to a far greater dominion of the material world than had been known before. However, efforts at control of nature are much older than the Scientific Revolution. We may seek to control natural forces by levers and pulleys, semiconductors and atomic piles, but the use of magic and incanta- tion, reaching far into the past, likewise repre- sents an attempt to control. Similarly, hierarchical social systems far antedate Merchant's period. Dichotomies, however seductive as tools of thought, must be used with care. The organic and mechanical metaphors are both broadly inclusive and both are susceptible to changes of emphasis and to restatement. Indeed, Merchant recognizes this when she deals with history, showing the interplay of philosophies and the linkages be- tween the two metaphors: "Some philosophers have argued that the two frameworks are funda- mentally incommensurable. Although such a per- ception of the dichotomy is too extreme..." 2 One cannot quarrel with a historian's decision to study a single time period, nor can one deny, in the face of much that is enlightening in this very book, that history's lessons are of value today. It is possible, however, to extrapolate too far. The mechanism Merchant describes was shaped by advances in physics, the dominant science of her period. Later advances in other fields — evolu- tion and cell biology, as well as the social sci- ences — have supplied abundant material rele- vant to a contemporary world view. (In The Lives of a Cell, Lewis Thomas reports finding at least momentary satisfaction in seeing the world as most resembling a single cell.) To regard an organic view of nature as the only source of correction for modern ills — the destruction of the environment, the exploitation of women and minorities — is to pursue the dichotomy beyond its intrinsic reach. In analyzing two contrasting systems of thought, Merchant challenges her readers to reexamine the assumptions of modern society. She reminds us that there are alternative ways of looking at the world. By a holistic approach to her material, she makes vivid the value of such an approach. To say that there are more alternatives to be consid- ered and more lessons to be learned is in no way to minimize her contribution. 1 The Death of Nature, p. 2. 2 Ibid, p. 289. Dr. Matchett taught mathematics for many years at the Laboratory Schools of the University of Chicago. 43 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Dear Helen, The Soviet Women issue of the Creative Woman came yesterday and I have read it from cover to cover. It is beautifully done and very moving. Sharon Tennison's very Jungian introversion at 35 and subsequent confrontation of the human dilemma was marvelous preparation for her efforts to bring together the women of Russia and America. It is impossible to generalize meaningfully — each woman interviewed pre- sented an individual outlook, but the overall impression is of self-knowledge and maturity. The reprinted article on Anna Akhmatova was especially interesting to me because I have so long thought of her as the leading Russian poet of the century without really knowing much about her. What a wonderful writer she was! Love, Allegra (Dr. Allegra Stewart is a scholar of language and literature. She lives in Indianapolis.) Dear Ms. Hughes: What a delight to receive your letter of January 9 and the enclosed copy of your fall 1989 edition: "Toward Planethood!" Many thanks for your thoughtfulness in sending your very interesting and artistic magazine. I hope you will get a million new subscribers - attracted not merely by the excellence of your presentations but by the free copy of our little book. If we can harness the energy of American women - nothing can block the creation of a more humane and peaceful world. With appreciation and every good wish, Benjamin B. Ferencz School of Law Pace University New York FREE copies of Planethood are still avail- able with each new subscription or gift subscription. "HOW CAN I HELP? WHAT CAN I DO?" Dear Editor, I'm writing about the idea I spoke of at the IWWG environmental seminar at the Women's Museum in Washington, D.C. The "Tupperware Parties" for recycled paper products and biode- gradable products has taken a new turn in the Social Action group of my church. We decided to hold an Earth Day Party on Earth Day, April 22, or the Sunday before or after, after church, during the coffee hour. We plan to display samples from two companies whose catalogues I have, and have people who are interested sign up for orders. Here are the addresses of the two companies: Earth Care Paper, Inc. Madison, WI 53704 (608) 256- 5522 Seventh Generation Products for a Health Planet 10 Farrell Street South Burlington, VT 05403 (800) 456- 1177 (24 hours) I have sent for about $250-worth of products which we will use as samples. Enough Christmas and birthday presents for a year, plus many items I will use myself! Kitchen and bathroom items, children's books and games, notes and cards, office paper, stationery, etc. The catalogues give much useful information, and Earth Care prints educational pamphlets. Both companies will send you extra catalogues. Perhaps they will supply you with samples if you tell them your plans and purposes. Both companies give a percentage of their profits to environmental organizations. Earth Care is 10%, I believe. I haven't given up my idea of personal at-home parties for other friends whom I work with on various community committees. I think we should get our church to use recycled paper in the office. Maybe our Social Action group will present them with a gift of some reams of paper of different qualities, to get them started. (We Unitarians are wordy.) I think this idea has all kinds of possibilities. It's educational and consciousness-raising, as well as encouraging to companies to expand production of less expensive environmentally safe products. Go with it, if you can! All your ideas and enthu- siasm and intelligent concern were such an inspiration! Jean Junge 44 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Dear Helen: Just finished reading your issue on the Soviet Woman and couldn't help but write to you. I was very moved by the different accounts of the womens' lives, the periods of history they described and the depth of feeling each displayed. But, every now and again, I had to look at the cover to see if the title of the issue was not the Russian Woman. Even Sharon Tennison in her introduction seemed to be talking primarily about Russian women. What you published was excellent, but either the title was somewhat misleading or the issue was not diverse enough. When you consider that only 51% of the population in the Soviet Union is Russian, the representation of the other 49% was far from complete. We seem to forget under what conditions the other fourteen republics came to be part of the Soviet Union and how most of them have popular front movements which are leading them toward total independence from this same Soviet Union. My family left Latvia when I was five years old. As a child I remember sitting spellbound while listening to grownups talk late into the night about events in the war (both WWI & WWII); and when I look back over my own early childhood I suppose one could say I had a few interesting experiences also. Through it all I have developed a very strong sense of national origin. Last summer I made my second trip back to Latvia since my family fled from there in 1944. I came away with many impressions. The first and foremost was how passionately Latvians want to be independent from the Soviet Union. In her poem "Courage" Anna Akhmatova writes: "We will preserve you, Russian Speech, from servitude in foreign chains". And yet, Russians seem to want to keep other languages and speeches in servitude to them. The Latvian province of Latgale is so saturated with Russian people that many times the Latvian people are ridiculed on the streets for speaking their own language. While on my trip, I took a picture of a woven tapestry depicting Latvian women in their regional folk costumes. It appears as though they are singing a song which tells of unifying the whole country on both sides of the river Daugava. One woman stands apart from the rest, she is naked and there is a picket fence separating her from the others. She is from the township of Abrene which has been so Russianized that the region, in this case represented by the naked woman, has been stripped of its identity. In another poem, " I Am Not One of Those Who Left the Land...", Anna Akhmatova writes: "Survely the reckoning will be made after the passing of this cloud." It seems to me that fourteen republics are now waiting for this reckoning and ironically, for most of them, the clouds have been the Russian people - and they will pass. Women all over the world have enough in common that they can understand one another and even become good friends. I have no doubt that I could be very good friends with any one of the women you interviewed. They have a depth of understanding that transcends national boundaries. Larissa Vasilyeva probably speaks for most of them when she says "Only we didn't know - we were in ignorance of the ways of our leaders, what secrets they kept, what horrible things they did." I find that many commentators also don't know. They especially don't know the many negative ways that Russian people outside of Russia proper assert themselves; the many privileges they allow themselves at the expense of the local population. It seems to me that nations could learn a lot from the simple psychology our mothers taught us: "If you want other children to play with you, you must be nice to them, otherwise they will go away." Well, to noone's surprise, the Baltic countries have already declared their intention to "go away." Certainly, on an individual level, there is still time to take the advice of our mothers and become friends. The enormity of what can be gained in that approach boggles the mind. I look forward to your next issue. Sincerely, Inta Sraders Glenwood, IL 45 EDITOR' S COLUMN A Little Gaia-talk among friends So we're all sitting around chewing our Rainforest Crunch. "Mmh. Delicious." "Sublime!" "Do we have to rot our teeth to save the rainforest?" "Here - take some super dental floss." "How does eating this candy really help?" "It creates a market for rainforest products.. .in this case, Brazil nuts... that are harvested without clearing the forest." "Why not clear the forest? WE did it to North America!" "We need the oxygen produced by the great tropical rainforest and the rest of the planet's trees busily doing photosynthesis, we need it to balance the depletion of the ozone layer, to combat the trend to global warming, and therefore to maintain the conditions necessary to sustain life." "Even more, we need it to conserve biotic diversity. Immense numbers of species live in the forests, identified and not-yet-identified." "Many potential uses of these threatened species may be lost forever, including medicines." "Forest land is quickly exhausted after clearing. The forest floor is not suitable for farming, and after a couple of years of using it for grazing, it is depleted even for that use and reverts to desert." "So: we should eat less beef. Demand for beef drives this process." "Right. Eat Rainforest Crunch!" "I still say it's hypocritical of us to lecture South Americans on saving their forests when we North Americans have destroyed so much of ours." "And we're still doing it! Cutting down the ancient forests, all that is left of our magnificent heritage. It's a war between intelligence and greed." "And we're using more than our share of the earth's energy resources. We complain about over-population in the Third World when one baby born in the U.S. will consume fifteen times more energy resources than a baby born in India will consume. We have met the enemy and it is us, as Pogo says." "We have to change a lot of things about our habits and way of life if this war on behalf of Gaia is to be won." "So is our official policy now echofeminism?" "Echofeminism? Does that mean you say everything twice?" "Starhawk pronounces it EEkofeminist..." "EEK! a feminist!" "Have you heard The New Confessional?" "Let's have it." "It goes like this: 'Bless me Mother for I have sinned. I used five plastic bags at the grocery store this week.' That's alright, my child. Just say fifteen Hail Gaia's and next time carry a canvas bag.'" Go in peace. HEH This issue of The Creative Woman was printed on recycled paper v 46 'i Artwork this page "Gaia" by Deborah Koff-Chapin Signed color photographic prints available from IN HER IMAGE A Gallery of Women's Art 3208 South East Hawthorne Portland, OR 97214 503/231-3762 Portfolio of Prints and Book Available: At the Pool of Wonder: Dreams and Visions of an Awakening Humanity Deborah Koff-Chapin 628 First Street Langley, WA 98260 202/221-8751 SuSscriptio n Make checks payable to The Creative Woman/GSU Please send me The Creative Woman for one year. Enclosed is my check or money order for $ $12.00 regular subscription Return to: The Creative Woman $14.00 foreign subscription Governors State University $20.00 institutional subscription University Park, IL 60466 $ 5.00 back issue Check here 1 Please send my free copy of Planethood: The Key to Your Survival and Prosperity by Benjamin B. Ferencz and Ken Keyes, Jr. Name Address City State Zip The Creatine Ionian Governors State University University Park, IL 60466 ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage Paid Park Forest, IL Permit No. 178 .